Trade unionists death toll spikes 175% in Venezuela
NGO Venezuelan Observatory of Social Unrest says murders in Venezuela go unpunished
The document entitled, "Trade Union Violence and Impunity 2012," states that violence soared 175% versus 2011, when the Human Rights Vicarage of Caracas reported 28 killings.
The observatory has attributed the frightening rise of deadly violence to three main factors: current social unrest, at least 15 demonstrations, 14% of which were staged by laborers; impunity, 96% of the crimes are not punished; and trade union parallelism, different trade unions engaged in a single sector fight to one another.
The news marked an ominous beginning, health-wise, of the year 2015: the Cardiovascular Surgery Unit at Hospital Clínico Universitario, one of the country's largest teaching hospitals, was to close completely on January 5 due to lack of medicines and surgical supplies. All patients who were waiting to be operated on were sent home. More than 10 patients waiting for surgery reportedly died there from lack of basic medical supplies in the two months prior to the closure.