María Corina Machado, the prominent Venezuelan opposition leader, has expressed her solidarity with Alexander Rodríguez, a Canary Island farmer who was brutally attacked on his farm by a group led by a Chavista militia member.
This incident occurred on a farm in Los Mangos, where Rodríguez resides after immigrating to Venezuela years ago. This is not the first time Rodríguez has been targeted, as he has experienced multiple attempts on his life since December last year.
The attack on the farmer has sparked immediate condemnation from his close associates, local activists, and even caught the attention of María Corina Machado herself, who took to social media to express her support for him.
Perilous Plight of Spanish Farmers in Venezuela
The story of Alexander Rodríguez serves as a chilling example of the ongoing persecution faced by Spanish farmers in states like Portuguesa and Yaracuy in Venezuela. Five years ago, EL MUNDO shed light on the nightmarish ordeal endured by Rodríguez, which has only intensified over time.
Rodríguez shares, “There is almost nothing left to steal; now they go straight for the land.” The farmer has already had 650 bulls and cows stolen from him, along with the destruction of 14 tractors, a harvester, and a truck. The latest attack on his farm was orchestrated by the National Land Institute (INTI), which issued him a 45-day notice to vacate his land.
However, Rodríguez’s appeal to the Agrarian Court managed to halt the proceedings temporarily. Despite the ongoing threats and violence, Rodríguez continues to fight for his land and livelihood.
María Corina Machado Stands Strong
María Corina Machado, a prominent figure in the Venezuelan opposition, has been a vocal advocate for the rights of Venezuelan farmers and the protection of private property.
In response to the video depicting the physical consequences of the attack on Rodríguez, Machado expressed her support, stating, “All my support to Alexander Rodríguez and every honest producer in Venezuela. We will build a country where the law is respected, private property is sacred, and the state serves its citizens. Stay strong, you are not alone!” Machado’s words of encouragement reflect her unwavering commitment to combating the impunity that plagues the Venezuelan government.
A Decade of Struggle and Resilience
The relentless assault on Rodríguez’s farms, including Los Mangos, El Carmen, and Las Canoñas, has persisted for over a decade. As the son of Canarian immigrants from La Gomera, Rodríguez has relocated his family to Madrid after receiving death threats.
Despite this, he remains steadfast in his determination to defend his land and serves as a symbol of resistance against the revolution’s impunity. Rodríguez laments the lack of accountability and alleges the involvement of officials from the Office of the People’s Defender in his persecution.
Devastation of Venezuela’s Agricultural Sector
This attack on Rodríguez once again exposes the deep-rooted issues that have ravaged Venezuela, particularly in what was once known as the country’s breadbasket. The invasion of farms, continuous theft, and the prevailing culture of impunity have directly impacted food production, exacerbating the scarcity and supply shortages that have plagued the nation for years.
While the agricultural sector struggles to recover, the Maduro government has resorted to widespread imports following the de facto dollarization of the economy.
Support shown by María Corina Machado towards Alexander Rodríguez, the assaulted Canary Island farmer, highlights the urgent need for justice and protection for Spanish farmers in Venezuela.
The ongoing threats, violence, and land seizures endured by Rodríguez are emblematic of the larger issues facing the country’s agricultural sector. As the struggle continues, it is essential for international attention to be drawn to the plight of farmers like Rodríguez, ensuring that their fight for justice and respect for private property does not go unnoticed.