At noon on Tuesday, Venezuelan authorities arrested pro-government activist Lina Ron and took her to Caracas’ military intelligence headquarters, according to an official statement by the Venezuelan Minister of Interior and Justice Tarek El Aissami. Ron, a founding and very public member of the far-left political party Union Patriótica Venezolana (UPV), appeared in footage of Monday’s violent attack against private broadcaster Globovisión.
At least 30 armed pro-government militants riding motorcycles stormed the Globovisión offices, setting off tear gas and injuring a Caracas police agent and two Globovisión employees. The assailants, sporting red berets and waving UPV banners, were caught on a video that was later aired by the broadcaster. Ron appeared to be the leader of the group.
El Aissami said in his statement that Ron was accused of conspiring to commit a crime, “among other things,” the Venezuelan press reported. Military personnel escorted Ron to the intelligence headquarters, where she is awaiting a court hearing, according to local news reports.
Following Ron’s arrest, Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez Frías said at a public event on Tuesday afternoon that Ron “is hurting the revolution and playing in favor of the enemy,” according to the Venezuelan press. Chávez said he had repeatedly warned Ron–publicly and privately–against engaging in such acts. “There is no other alternative,” Chávez said. “She violated the law and must face the force of the law.”
In 2008, Ron and other UPV activists stormed the Caracas Archiepiscopal Palace after Catholic leaders criticized Chávez, the Spanish daily El Mundo reported. At that time, Ron had declared Globovisión “a revolutionary objective,” according to El Mundo.