CARACAS, Venezuela — Venezuela is deeply divided between supporters of the government of President Nicolas Maduro and members of the opposition. Here is a sampling of what people on both sides of the political chasm were saying on Saturday:
"The situation in the country is serious. It's very bad. If in reality everyone went out in the streets to get rid of this government and they would really go, then we would do it. We're tired of so much violence, of so much crime. I was robbed a couple of weeks ago and they almost killed me, and everything just goes on as normal. I work in a supermarket and there's no food. It can't go on like this," said Blanca Leon, a 42-year-old administrative employee of a supermarket who was working during Saturday demonstrations.
"We are a government of peace. We are a government that wants the best for poor people. There is crime, but there is crime everywhere. There are shortages but if you go to the store, there is food," said Gloria Cera, 40-year-old mother of 2 taking part in a pro-Maduro march.
"We're out in the streets because we don't want a crisis like Syria. The government is throwing our political leaders in jail and it's hard to find food. The store shelves are empty. We are on the brink," said Marisol Gonzalez, a 60-year-old history professor at an opposition rally in Caracas.