SOLDIERS in Venezuela are abandoning their posts to escape Maduro’s brutal socialist regime, according to reports.
Images on social media show members of Venezuela’s National Guard defecting into neighbouring Colombia — disobeying orders to ensure aid is blocked from entering their desperately troubled country.
Twitter Members of Venezuela’s National Guard after defecting to Colombia amid aid protests today
President Nicolas Maduro is attempting to prevent vital US-backed aid coming into Venezuela and has been testing the military’s loyalty by making them enforce barricades along borders.
But as civilians have been tearing down barriers to allow the urgently needed medical and food supplies in, troops are using the popular uprising to abandon their posts in direct defiance of Maduro.
Scenes at the Simón Bolivar International Bridge spanning the border between Venezuela and Colombia show soldiers arriving on the Colombian side.
Colombian migration officers released video footage of the troops walking with their pistols and rifles above their heads in surrender after fleeing their homeland.
The young soldiers were then ordered to lay face down on the ground as migration officials urge onlookers to keep a safe distance.
The National Guard also fired tear gas today at workers demanding to cross the border at Ureña into Colombia to work.
Witnesses said the dispersed men covered their faces with their shirts and threw rocks at the guard.
Interim president Juan Guaido, who is leading the opposition to despotic Maduro, has called for mass protests today to allow the aid to get through.
Members of the National Guard assigned to the Simón Bolivar International Bridge have decided to join those who are rescuing democracy in Venezuela.Juan Guaido, Interim President of Venezuela
Reacting to the soldier’s defection, Guaido tweeted: “We’re good!”Venezuela: I hereby confirm that several members of the National Guard assigned to the Simón Bolivar International Bridge have decided to join those who are rescuing democracy in Venezuela.
“Humanitarian aid will enter.”
Earlier today, some Venezuelans were singing their national anthem while others held hands in a prayer circle and asked God to protect their country near the Colombian border.
The protests come after Venezuelan soldiers were ordered to kill innocent civilians on Friday for trying to stop the military blockade.
In the early hours of this morning, a defiant Guaido wrote: “We call on everyone to go out into the streets massively across the country, to show themselves in peace in the barracks to demand [the National Bolivarian Armed Forces of Venezuela] let the humanitarian aid pass.
“Let us now hear the clamour of a whole people who want life, future and freedom.”
exclusiveMOTHER’S TEARS Alesha mum ‘forever haunted’ by look on daughter’s face as she lay dead CONCRETE TOMB Woman ‘killed paedo lover and set his body in cement for abusing her son’ TRAGIC LOSS Brody Stevens dead at 48 – The Hangover actor dies from ‘apparent suicide’ HIT THE ROAD JACK Now Brit ISIS convert Jihadi Jack begs to come back as he misses Dr Who FATAL PLUNGE Woman dangles from tower block window ‘by HAIR’ before plunging 100ft to death ‘NOT IN HER HEART’ Neighbours warn Shamima Begum’s ‘lying about changing to get back to UK’
Two died and at least 12 others were injured when troops opened fire on their own countrymen in the village of Kumarakapay near the Brazilian border.
Roughly 30 million people are suffering with malnutrition in Venezuela at the moment.
But socialist leader Maduro — who came to power in 2013 and was re-elected in a vote deemed fraudulent by many last year — had ordered that the aid be blocked in a bid to cling to power.
Venezuelan soldiers who deserted their posts and crossed the Simon Bolívar international bridge are welcomed by Colombian authorities
Twitter/ TVVnoticias No information has yet been released on the rank of the defecting soldiers
AFP or licensors President Nicolas Maduro had ordered soldiers to install a border blockade to prevent foreign aid entering Venezuela
We pay for your stories! Do you have a story for The Sun Online news team? Email us at email@example.com or call 0207 782 4368. You can WhatsApp us on 07810 791 502. We pay for videos too. Click here to upload yours.