May 29, 2007

Totalitarian TV


From AFP: Venezuela protests TV clampdown by Chavez.

President Hugo Chavez's clampdown on opposition television stations widened Monday as police used rubber bullets and tear gas on demonstrators protesting what they called an attack on free speech.

Venezuela levied charges against US cable network CNN for linking Chavez to Al-Qaeda terror network headed by Osama bin Laden. The move came just hours after the shutting-down of the country's oldest television station, the openly anti-government Radio Caracas Television network.

The government also accused Venezuelan TV network Globovision of encouraging any would-be assassins of the president. ...

On Monday several people were injured as police in Caracas fired rubber bullets and tear gas to put down a demonstration against the RCTV shutdown, following the fifth straight day of protests.

A policeman's leg was broken in the fracas, a police official said.

RCTV was replaced by TVes, a state-backed "socialist" station which opened with cultural shows. Chavez supporters held a huge, night-to-dawn public party outside the network studios to celebrate the birth of the new "socialist television" and the end of the bitterly anti-Chavez media outlet.

TVes president Lil Rodriguez said the move reflected "our sovereignty."

The government will now control two of the four nationwide broadcasters in Venezuela, one of them state-owned VTV.

UPDATE I -- May 30: More at Tman and Jeff's Garage & Ale House.

UPDATE II: From FOX News: Venezuelan Opposition Leader Demands Hugo Chavez Free Jailed Protesters.

Posted by Forkum at May 29, 2007 03:03 PM