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Photographer detained by presidential security guards

(IPYS/IFEX) - On 23 May 2010, members of Casa Militar, President Hugo Chávez's security, detained "Diario 2001" photojournalist Simón Clemente. They also forced the journalist to delete the photos he had taken. The detention took place in front of the presidential residence, known as La Casona, in Caracas.

Clemente was covering a protest march organized by the movement Voluntad Popular to demand that the presidential residence be opened to all citizens. He was suddenly confronted by two men with rifles, who demanded that he hand over his camera.

The journalist refused to let go of his equipment and struggled with the security guards. He was eventually pushed into a van and taken inside the house.

After interrogating him, the officials forced Clemente to delete the photographs of the demonstration. He was then transferred to the Military Intelligence Department (DIM) headquarters, where officials continued interrogating him and opened a file on his case. He was released four hours later.

IPYS condemns all actions that prevent journalists from freely doing their work.

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