Watch an alleged drone attack on Venezuela’s president sends soldiers fleeing

Nicolas Maduro

Interior Minister Néstor Luis Reverol said six "terrorists" had been detained Sunday, the Associated Press reported.

A second drone "lost control in the general area of the event and struck a building known as Don Eduardo near Bolivar Avenue, detonating at the height of the first floor as it fell to earth", Reverol said.

Reverol says the second drone crashed into a nearby building and exploded.

The US State Department dismissed the accusations while rights group Venezuela Justice said a subsequent purge of the country's armed forces resulted in 150 people being jailed "for political reasons".

People living near the site of what appeared to be an assassination attempt against Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro say they saw a drone crashing into an apartment building as explosions occurred during the event.

"We saw the drone that looked like the size of half a bicycle". "We were scared. It sounded like a bomb".

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Venezuelan opposition leaders are fearing a crackdown and increased repression following a freakish, alleged assassination attempt against the country's strongman president, Nicolas Maduro on Saturday night in Caracas.

Afterward, Maduro gave a defiant speech in which he accused Venezuelan opposition groups, financial backers in Florida, and Colombia's outgoing president, Nobel Peace Prize victor Juan Manuel Santos, of trying to assassinate him. "It is already the custom of the Venezuelan leader to permanently blame Colombia for any type of situation".

Firefighters at the scene in Caracas on Saturday have disputed the official version.

So far, Maduro has offered no proof to back up the charges of Colombian or U.S. involvement.

Maduro blamed it on the far-right opposition in his country as well as neighboring Colombia.

Late Saturday, a rebel group calling itself the National Movement of Soldiers in T-Shirts claimed responsibility in a statement passed to US-based opposition journalist Patricia Poleo, who read it on her YouTube channel. The AP could not independently verify the authenticity of the message.

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Experts called on the government to release further video footage and evidence.

Venezuelan state television images showed Maduro looking up disconcertedly in the middle of a speech Saturday when a bang was heard, then uniformed members of the country's National Guard lined up in the parade suddenly breaking ranks and scattering. A voice was heard saying "let's go, my leader" right before he was rushed away.

QUESTIONS were asked yesterday about an apparent drone attack on Venezuelan president Nicolas Maduro, which he claimed was an assassination attempt. All were freed, but some had their cameras confiscated, the union said.

The security forces later took apart the auto and found what appeared to be remote controls, tablets and computers, said the two, who identified themselves as Andres and Karina, without giving their last names.

Amid deadly, near-daily protests past year, a rogue police officer flew a stolen helicopter over the capital and launched grenades at several government buildings. The commander, Oscar Pérez, was executed in January after publishing dramatic videos of his confrontation with military personnel. Maduro has steadily moved to concentrate power as the nation reels from a crippling economic crisis.

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