Venezuela (MNN) — State forces fire tear gas at protestors and the U.S. promises military action if needed in Venezuela. These are among the latest developments following an attempted military coup earlier this week.
On Tuesday, opposition leader Juan Guaidó called upon military forces to oust President Maduro. A few officials responded but most stood by Maduro, leading him to declare victory over the attempted coup. At press time, thousands of Guaidó’s supporters gathered in the capital city to show their support of his mission.
Change is constant as the situation unfolds, and so is TWR’s presence. The ministry boosted its radio signal in Bonaire to make sure messages of hope can reach Venezuela. Speaking to MNN on the heels of the coup attempt, TWR’s Steve Shantz said, “We plan on going on the air [Wednesday] and just speaking to our listeners, speaking to the people in Venezuela.
“[We’re] not trying to get involved, not trying to sway people either way, but trying to bring them words of encouragement.”
Venezuela: a nation of unending problems
How did things get so bad in Venezuela? It’s a complex situation that’s been unraveling for months, but here’s a basic summary from BBC News.
Essentially, the economy fell apart. People couldn’t get essentials like food and medicine, so they left in droves. Maduro and Guaidó have been fighting for control since January, and tensions came to a head this week.
As they walk alongside Venezuelan church leaders, TWR staff see challenges first-hand.
“People are suffering. And, there is genuine, genuine, hurt and struggle going on in people’s lives right now,” Shantz says. “The situation in Venezuela definitely needs to change, and the Christian leaders really need wisdom [in] responding to that at this time.
“Please pray for a peaceful change in the way the country is run at this time because the situation is untenable.”
Things are changing rapidly on the ground and it’s difficult to predict what will happen next. Shantz says, “If there is a transition of power or if the existing regime decides to take the needs of the country to heart, we want that to be a peaceful process.
“Our response is going to be one of trying to encourage the people of Venezuela.”
“These are just normal people like us; people with families and jobs that are trying to make ends meet,” says Shantz. “Keep those people in mind and think of them with compassion, and uphold them in prayer – that their situation would be able to improve.”
Header image is a stock photo obtained via Pixabay.