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Venezuela: Thousands March in Opposing Pro, Anti-Govt Rallies

IN PICTURES: Demonstrators filled the streets of Caracas to speak up for and against the government 

As political tensions continue to run high in Venezuela, opposing marches took to the streets in Caracas on the 207th anniversary of the South American country's independence to rally in support of and against the government of President Nicolas Maduro. 

Dressed in red, the color associated with the Bolivarian Revolution set in motion by late President Hugo Chavez, thousands of government supporters poured into the capital city in the name of defending the country's sovereignty in the face of right-wing violence and threats of foreign intervention. Maduro called the rallies in repsonse to opposition plans for a "Mega March" the same day. 

The marches come just one day after President Nicolas Maduro accused the U.S. government of backing a coup plot in the country, saying security forces had arrested an “armed commando group sent by the opposition in order to attack the mobilization called by the right-wing for Wednesday to generate violence and deaths in the country.”

Ahead of the marches, Maduro claimed the pro-government contingent would mark the largest "red tide" in the country's history. 

teleSUR takes a look at both sides of the political divide filling the streets of Caracas. 

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Supporters (in red) of Venezuela
Supporters (in red) of Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro and opposition supporters argue in Caracas, Venezuela, April 19, 2017. Photo:Reuters
Government supporters hold a poster of late President Hugo Chavez during marches in Caracas.
Government supporters hold a poster of late President Hugo Chavez during marches in Caracas. Photo:teleSUR
Chavistas rally on motorcycles for the marches in Caracas.
Chavistas rally on motorcycles for the marches in Caracas. Photo:teleSUR
Opposition demonstrators rally during the so-called "mother of all marches" against Venezuela
Opposition demonstrators rally during the so-called "mother of all marches" against Venezuela's President Maduro in Caracas. Photo:Reuters
Government supporters dressed in red carry a Venezuelan flag during the marches.
Government supporters dressed in red carry a Venezuelan flag during the marches. Photo:teleSUR
Carlos Ocariz, mayor of Sucre district and representative of the opposition, and deputy Julio Borges, President of the National Assembly rally during the march Maduro.
Carlos Ocariz, mayor of Sucre district and representative of the opposition, and deputy Julio Borges, President of the National Assembly rally during the march Maduro. Photo:Reuters
Maduro said the pro-government marches would mark the largest seen in the country
Maduro said the pro-government marches would mark the largest seen in the country's history. Photo:teleSUR
An aerial view shows streets filled with demonstrators supporting the government of President Nicolas Maduro.
An aerial view shows streets filled with demonstrators supporting the government of President Nicolas Maduro. Photo:teleSUR
An overheard view shows the opposition marches in Caracas.
An overheard view shows the opposition marches in Caracas. Photo:Reuters
Opposition demonstrators build a barricade while clashing with riot police.
Opposition demonstrators build a barricade while clashing with riot police. Photo:Reuters
Government supporters carry flags and banners while demonstrating in the capital city.
Government supporters carry flags and banners while demonstrating in the capital city. Photo:teleSUR
Demonstrators build a barricade while clashing with riot police.
Demonstrators build a barricade while clashing with riot police. Photo:Reuters
Government supporters have rejected right-wing violence.
Government supporters have rejected right-wing violence. Photo:teleSUR
The marches also coincide with Venezuela
The marches also coincide with Venezuela's Independence Day. Photo:teleSUR
A demonstrator clashes with riot police.
A demonstrator clashes with riot police. Photo:Reuters
Supporters (in red) of Venezuela
Supporters (in red) of Venezuela's President Maduro march in front of opposition supporters. Photo:Reuters
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