Teargas explosion at Caracas club leaves dozens dead
Sheetal Sukhija - Sunday 17th June, 2018
A fight broke out at a Caracas nightclub early on Saturday morning
A person activated a teargas grenade inside the nightclub triggering a stampede
Over 500 people were at a party at the club when the device went off
CARACAS, Venezuela - Over 500 people had gathered at a nightclub in the Venezuelan capital of Caracas on Saturday, when a teargas explosion triggered a stampede.
In a statement, Venezuela’s Interior Minister Nestor Reverol said that 17 people were killed and several others were injured in the stampede, which was triggered when a tear-gas canister was set off during a brawl.
Reverol said that hundreds of party-goers were celebrating the end of the school year at the Los Cotorros club in the El Paraiso neighbourhood.
However, some people reportedly got into a fight at about 3 am and that’s when someone activated a teargas grenade inside the club - which led to the stampede.
Reverol said in an official statement, “The government of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, led by president Nicolas Maduro, deplores this unfortunate event. We send our condolences to the families.”
According to Noris Villanueva, an autopsy assistant at the local Perez Carreno hospital, who examined their bodies said that 11 people suffocated to death when the gas filled the club’s confined space.
There were no details available about the six others who were killed in the incident.
Reverol told reporters that eight of those who died were minors and under 18 years of age.
Five others were said to have suffered grave injuries.
According to government officials, seven people had been arrested following the incident.
Local reports noted that two minors that had been identified by witnesses have been detained by the police.
Further, the owner of the club has been arrested for failing to implement measures to prevent weapons being brought into the premises.
The Interior Minister said that investigations were ongoing.
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