Venezuela's Supreme Court targeted in helicopter attack amid ongoing crisis


Venezuela's Supreme Court was targeted by a grenade attack launched from a police helicopter Tuesday. It's latest chapter in an ongoing political crisis between Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro and opposition leaders who accuse Maduro of being a dictator, Reuters reported Wednesday.

No one was reported to be hurt in the attack, but Venezuelan officials said that a police helicopter dropped four grenades on the court and fired 15 shots at the Interior Ministry, where a social event was being held at the time.

"Sooner rather than later, we are going to capture the helicopter and those behind this armed terrorist attack against the institutions of the country," Maduro said, according to Reuters. "They could have caused dozens of deaths."

Ariana Cubillos/AP

The BBC reported Wednesday that the Supreme Court has been criticized by the Venezuelan opposition for rulings that support Maduro's leadership.

According to the BBC, the officer who allegedly piloted the helicopter identified himself on social media as Oscar Pérez. His whereabouts are reportedly unknown.

In a video posted in Instagram on Tuesday, Pérez reportedly called on Venezuelans to oppose tyranny, and said, "We are a coalition of military employees, policemen and civilians who are looking for balance and are against this criminal government."

Oscar Perez/Instagram

The BBC reported that daily protests against the Maduro government have been ongoing for months amid a worsening political and economic crisis. According to Reuters, at least 75 people have died and more have been injured since April in the anti-government protests.

The protesters are calling for elections, relief from an ongoing economic crisis and the release of jailed opposition demonstrators, among other demands, according to Reuters.

The BBC reported that opponents of the government reportedly plan to keep up protests until new elections are held and the Maduro government is no longer in power.