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31 US citizens arrested in Venezuela

By Aleksander Boyd

London 03.04.07 | Daily El Progreso reported yesterday that 31 US citizens have been detained in the Gran Sabana region, close to Santa Elena de Uairen in the Venezuela - Brazil border. Accusations of illegally practising medicine purportedly caused the arrest. Regional media were informed by an allegedly trustworthy source.

The 31 American citizens are kept incommunicado awaiting presidential orders, reported the source. It is believed that charges of spying or to be part of the CIA will be levied against them.

The group is composed by medical doctors, nurses and religious individuals.

Update: sources in Venezuela have just confirmed to me that the 31 US citizens are not in jail but have been 'asked' by the military to not leave the compound where they were.

Update II [05.04.07]: the group of detainees is composed by 7th Day Adventists. A source stated that the decision of detaining the group appeared to had been taken by local military that thought odd the increased number of US citizens arriving in the area. High officials of the Chavez regime were, as of early afternoon yesterday, unaware of the situation. Allegedly the group was to be transported in a military plane to Caracas so that they could leave the country without triggering a diplomatic incident.

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