A man plays a violin at a rally during a strike called to protest against Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro's government in Caracas, Venezuela July 27, 2017. REUTERS/Marco Bello
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Venezuela careened towards a showdown on its streets Friday between anti-government protesters and security forces, raising international alarm at worsening deadly unrest and prompting the United States to order the families of embassy staff out.Four months of protests against unpopular leftist President Nicolas Maduro have already claimed 112 lives, according to prosecutors -- seven of them during a two-day general strike that ended Thursday.The United States has imposed sanctions on 13 current and former Venezuelan officials to try to force a change, leading to Maduro branding the actions "illegal" and "insolent".Venezuela's opposition, which controls the National Assembly, has urged civil disobedience against what it terms Maduro's dictatorship.Skirmishes in the street between supporters of the opposition and the Maduro government have become commonplace.Maduro accuses Washington of fomenting unrest against him, aided by the opposition.
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