Venezuela opposition rallies for jailed members

Opponents of Venezuela's leftist government marched towards jails on Friday in Caracas and other cities demanding the release of opposition leaders they say are being unjustly held as political prisoners in the country's deadly crisis.

The key rally targeted Ramo Verde prison near Caracas, where the most prominent of the prisoners, Popular Will party leader Leopoldo Lopez, is being held after his arrest in 2014.

Lopez was sentenced to 14 years on charges of inciting violence during deadly riots that year while a lead prosecutor in the case later denounced irregularities in his conviction.

Lopez's wife Lilian Tintori has become one of the international faces of Venezuela's political crisis, traveling to meet with foreign officials to raise awareness of her husband's fate.

"We do not want confrontation, violence or gunshots," she said, announcing Friday's rally. "We want solidarity with those who are resisting like Leopoldo. We want a country without dictatorship and without repression."

"Either we get there or they will repress us, but we are not going to hold back," said Freddy Guevara, deputy speaker of the opposition-held national legislature, after military police mounted a barrier of trucks and metal fencing on the road to Ramo Verde to block the march.

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