Maria José Castro put himself in front of a tank. Tomás Vivas appeared in a march playing a “cuatro”. Hans Wuerich undressed and remained alone with a Bible in his hand. With that, they became symbols.

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It’s called four. It is an instrument known from the guitar family, which is used in Latin America, especially Puerto Rico, Colombia and Venezuela. Gives chords to popular songs and neighborhood dance. But in this case, it represents much more. “I went to play joropo. I am often not heard, especially when I stand in the line of fire between demonstrators and police. It does not matter, I continue to play “, tells El País Tomás Vivas, 29, an artist who left Mérida to live in Caracas looking for more job opportunities to improve his life.

Since February 2014, when the first manifestations with greater weight were registered against Nicolás Maduro, who appears like this: face covered, naked bust and four in the hands. Today, many young people come up with the same instrument. Vivas, who prefers peaceful protests, has become an icon of the Venezuelan resistance.

Hans Wuerich, 27, claimed that title when, on the 20th, he appeared naked in front of the military and with a Bible in his hand. Protest against political prisoners, the state of the economy, the lack of basic necessities. And it assumes that it is almost a victory the way Maduro reacted to his image, which ran the world. “It’s the peaceful protests that hit dictatorships. You know he’s a weak demon, “he said.

Maria Jose Castro, a Portuguese woman living in Caracas, is the latest icon of this fight: when she got involved in a Venezuelan flag and placed herself in front of a Bolivarian National Guard tank, she became a symbol for the younger ones. “I felt that I had become the mother of all these kids who were manifesting themselves. It hurt me how they shot at them. When I heard the soldiers ordering the advance of the tanks, I thought there would be a massacre and I went forward, “he explains.




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