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Caracas, Apr 14. ABN.- The U.S. interventionist agency, National Endowment for Democracy (NED), awarded on Wednesday during a meeting held in Yakarta, Indonesia, the Venezuelan opposing student movement with the prize “Tribute to Democratic Courage,” EFE informed.

The NED, which is an arm of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), announced its support to the subversive actions carried out since 2007 by right-wing university students against the Government of President Chavez, which was labeled as an “authoritarian regime.”


Supported by opposing media and political parties, this group of students carried out several demonstrations, in which people died, some were wounded and destroying diverse kind of buildings and public infrastructure in diverse regions of the country. They began their acts with slogans in favor of the private television channel RCTV, which concession ended in May of that year.

Some of the students that lead the protests of the self-denominated “white hands” movement, such as Yon Goicoechea, Freddy Guevara and Ricardo Sanchez, are nowadays candidates for the National Assembly representing traditional right wing parties. These students used to say that their movement had no relation at all with political parties.

The prize granted to them is shared with subversive organizations that operate in other countries such as Syria and Iran, and in previous events it has been granted to far-right groups that oppose governments labeled by the U.S. as enemies. Cuba, for instance.

The NED was created during the Cold War, in 1982, and is currently presided over by the neo-Conservative Carl Gershman. It is part of a group of interventionist organizations officially financed by the U.S. Congress and the State Department, which channel their resources through institutes like: the Center for International Private Enterprise (CIPE); National Democratic Institute (NDI); International Republican Institute (IRI); and the American Center for International Labor Solidarity (ACILS).

In March, the NED awarded the Venezuelan journalist Andres Cañizalez for his project “The Chavez's Era: The Political History and the Democratic Challenges of Venezuelan Journalism.” The NED gave him residence at the International Forum for Democratic Studies of the NED, in Washington; a four month grant to work; and gave him economical support to “research” and publish his book.

Cañizalez has promoted campaigns from within the country and abroad to discredit the democratic characteristic of the Venezuelan government.

Other right wing organizations that have received grants from the NED are: Sumate, Liderazgo y Vision, and Consorcio Justicia.

The relation between the NED and the CIA has been publicly confirmed by their founders. For instance, Allen Weinstein, who said to the Washington Post in 1991: “a lot what we (NED) do today was done covertly 25 years ago by the CIA...”

FIN/ABN/TRAD/EA