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Venezuela's Information Minister denies claims that government channel blacked out protests

Editorial | El Nacional

Caracas, 19 April 2005 | Venezuela's Minister of Communications and Information Andrés Izarra explained that the demonstration staged by a group of Chávez's supporters at Plaza Bolívar was not covered by the State Channel because "we were not there to present breaking news".

The demonstrators availed themselves of the commemoration of the 195th anniversary of the signing of the Independence Act to protest an alleged fraud in the internal elections of the Movimiento Quinta República (Chávez's own party). Their mission was to draw attention to Freddy Bernal, who had to adjourn the ceremony at 11:30 am.

In response to which Izarra insisted that Channel 8 (government controlled news channel) was supposed to be broadcasting the official 19th of April event and not any breaking news occurring a few yards away. “The State’s communication policy is to represent events exactly as they occur,” decreed the minister.

Translation by W.K.

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