21 Apr 2014

Protest for 'resurrection of democracy'

8:25 pm on 21 April 2014

There have been renewed clashes between anti-government protesters and police in the Venezuelan capital Caracas after a march marking Easter.

At least 40 people - both protesters and security forces - have died and hundreds of people have been arrested the demonstrations began in February this year.

Demonstrators attack a water cannon during the protest in Caracas on Sunday.

Demonstrators attack a water cannon during the protest in Caracas on Sunday. Photo: AFP

The protests started with students demanding action to tackle Venezuela's high crime rate, growing inflation and shortages of certain food staples, but have since grown into a wider opposition movement with many protesters saying they will not stop until the government of President Nicolas Maduro resigns, the BBC reports.

The government accuses the opposition of trying to stage a coup, with backing from the United States.

Students marched barefoot to imitate Jesus walking towards the crucifixion and later burned puppets of Mr Maduro and other government ministers.

The rally was called 'Resurrection of Democracy' and organised to mark Easter Sunday, the day when Christians believe Jesus rose from the dead.

In other parts of the city, supporters of the government burned effigies of opposition leader Enrique Capriles.

Mr Maduro last week marked one year in office, after replacing the late Hugo Chavez. Mr Maduro said via Twitter: "I will continue to fulfil my oath with the people. No-one will deny our right to be happy, free and independent."