Venezuela returns jailed opposition leader to house arrest

Caracas Mayor Antonio Ledezma, left, shown here in a 2009 file photo.
Caracas Mayor Antonio Ledezma, left, shown here in a 2009 file photo. ASSOCIATED PRESS

Venezuelan state security agents returned jailed opposition leader Antonio Ledezma to house arrest, his wife said in a Twitter post Friday.

“Several minutes ago, Antonio was unexpectedly returned by SEBIN to our home,” his wife, Mitzy Capriles, wrote on Ledezma’s Twitter account, referring to the Bolivarian National Intelligence Service. “We thank the people of Venezuela and the international community for their concern and solidarity.”

Ledezma and Leopoldo López, Venezuela’s most high-profile political prisoner, were taken in predawn raids Tuesday, accused of violating the terms of their respective house arrests by making public statements against the government of President Nicolás Maduro.

According to his wife Lilian Tintori, Venezuelan opposition leader Leopoldo Lopez was taken from his home early Tuesday morning by the SEBIN (The Bolivarian National Intelligence Service)

Both had backed protests against the election Sunday of a new legislative body with nearly unfettered power. The new constituent assembly, packed with members of Maduro’s ruling socialist party, is scheduled to be installed Friday.

There were no indications early Friday that López might also be released. His wife, Lilian Tintori, wrote on Twitter on Thursday that neither she nor López’s attorneys had been able to reach him in the 58 hours since he’d been seized from home.

One of Ledezma’s daughters, Oriette Schadendorf Capriles, told reporters Friday morning that her father had been held in solitary confinement at the Ramo Verde military prison. At no point was he told why he was jailed or taken back home.

“No one explained the reason behind either transfer,” she said. “He’s OK, thank God.”

Opposition leader Leopoldo Lopez greets supporters from his home in Caracas, Venezuela, Saturday, July 8, 2017. Lopez has been transferred to house arrest. The court says in a statement early Saturday that Lopez was granted the "humanitarian measu

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