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Security & Strategic Review - January 2020

VENEZUELA: Gold rush driving violent crime

The death of eight people in the gold-mining town of Ikabarú, on Bolívar state’s Brazilian border, has drawn significant national attention in Venezuela. The so-called ‘Ikabarú massacre’ is the latest violent incident linked to criminal gangs seeking to take advantage of the region’s vast mineral wealth, as the ongoing crisis in Venezuela’s oil industry has sparked a gold rush that is blurring the boundaries between legal and illegal mining, with dire consequences for the local population.

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