Venezuela protests: woman shot dead as thousands vote in unofficial referendum

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President Nicolas Maduro denounces vote as illegal as activists say gunmen fired on crowd of protesters

Gunmen in Venezuela shot into a crowd of voters on Sunday, activists said, killing one woman and wounding three others during an unofficial referendum organised by the opposition to push for an end to two decades of socialist rule.

The opposition Democratic Unity coalition said a pro-government “paramilitary” gang opened fire in Caracas’ poor neighbourhood of Catia, where thousands were participating in the event. Video footage showed people scattering as gunshots rang out, many taking sanctuary inside a church.

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