Odile Rios is a street gang member in Caracas. She once worked as a security guard. Since 2015, she has worked as a worker at a state-run garment factory. But working in the factory was all relative, she said, as she spoke. Only as a week ago, she saw 400 workers abandon their posts, the factory’s site flooded, windows broken, and cuts and bruises on her face, from shoving other workers away from the factory.
“That’s why I’m out of here,” she said. “They treated us like animals.”
Maduro was elected on a wave of support, but those supporters abandoned him after he turned Venezuela into a near-socialist state. His Venezuela transformed itself into one that has become one of the most prominent pariahs of international society, with crumbling infrastructure, dilapidated housing, an economy spiraling into chaos, and an increase in food and medicine shortages.
An international chorus of criticism recently rejected a request from Maduro to travel to the upcoming United Nations General Assembly in New York. Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov was among those dismissing the request as “out of touch.” The head of the Organization of American States, Luis Almagro, on Thursday also rejected the request, saying it was a sign of “total isolation of Venezuela,” while urging the international community not to ignore “the misdeeds and lack of democracy of the socialist regime.”