Details behind the sudden decision to cancel President Hugo Chavez Frias’ next-week trip to Washington D.C. and New York (to deliver a speech to the United Nations) are being revealed by security services who say they have “overwhelming evidence” of a CIA-backed plan to “bring down” the Chavez Frias’ airplane during the scheduled flight to the United States from Caracas. Sources in Venezuela’s Military Intelligence Directorate (DIM) have told VHeadline.com that “presented with overwhelming evidence of Washington’s planned attack on the Presidential flight, it was decided that the President’s personal security was preeminent and that he should not go!”
State Security & Political (DISIP) police agents were involved in a gun battle in Plaza Altamira Friday night as they moved to detain a suspect now named as Jorge Rojas Riera, for the Friday morning bombing at the Casa Militar barracks, across Avenida Urdaneta from the Miraflores Presidential Palace. It is reported that President Hugo Chavez Frias was working at his desk when the 1:00 a.m. blast went off but that his life had never been put in danger as many gleeful wire-service reporters had immediately cabled to their North American publishers.
Reports say that some 60 DISIP and National Guard (GN) officers were able to take the suspect into custody but only after a skirmish with opposition-controlled Chacao municipal police officers and gunmen identified as former army officers who had been dismissed the service after they participated in the April 11, 2002, coup d’etat. Police say Rojas Riera was detained after officers were forced to use an electronic stun gun to capture and ‘cuff him. Little is known of the detainee other than that he has been identified having been employed at Plaza Altamira as a “security agent” by opposition organizers … meanwhile he has told interrogators that he acted independently in the Friday morning’s grenade attack.
Rebel army officer Felix Moreno was reportedly wounded in an exchange of gunfire. Chacao Mayor Leopoldo Lopez says part of the blame has to be laid on DISIP agents who did not identify themselves … he says they arrived to Plaza Altamira just before midnight and were heavily armed but were not in uniform. “there was a lot of running-around and another gun-battle close to Torre Britanica (south of Avenida Francisco Miranda) in which a DISIP wagon was overturned.
Strong rumors are circulating today that the man arrested had earlier sought political asylum at the Dominican Republic embassy in Caracas but had been asked to return later.