Some US companies that have left or scaled back in Venezuela

Thousands of demonstrators rally against Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro in Caracas

Thousands of demonstrators rally against Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro in Caracas

The government last year abruptly postponed regional elections the opposition was heavily favored to win and cut off a petition drive to force a referendum seeking Maduro's removal before elections late next year.

The plant was confiscated on Wednesday as anti-government protesters clashed with authorities in a country that is roiling in economic troubles such as food shortages and triple-digit inflation.

GM will be taking legal action, but it is unclear what action that will be, according to the statement.

Movistar and Telefonica did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

"This is the moment", said Raquel Belfort, a 42-year-old protester in wealthier eastern Caracas on Thursday, sporting a hat in the yellow, blue and red colors of the Venezuelan flag.

The factory seizure arose from an nearly 20-year-old lawsuit brought by a former GM dealership in western Venezuela. "We continue to work with the Venezuelan government to seek solutions to convert currency". "Given the situation in Venezuela these days, it would be really hard to find another job like the one I am doing here at this plant".

Venezuela's Foreign Minister Delcy Rodriguez announced on her Twitter account that "armed bands hired by the opposition attacked a maternal and child hospital with 54 children (inside)". Rebounding oil prices, which are up around 60 percent this year after dipping to a 13-year low, could buy Maduro some time to attempt to fix the economy.

"They came here with all the files and documents saying that they have been fighting this since 2000, saying that General Motors has not been fulfilling its contracts", Perdomo said.

Opposition leaders have accused Mr Maduro of ruling the country like a dictator; the president says opponents are trying to topple him by force. "We don't know what is on the horizon". GM forced to lay off 2700 workers, but vowing to fight this tonight. He said employees had been guarding it.

The seizer of private property belonging to a USA based business by a foreign and hostile government, for the benefit of said government needed to be reported. It also has 79 dealers that employ 3,900 people. GM's factory in the industrial city of Valencia did not produce a single vehicle previous year.

GM has about 2,700 workers in Venezuela, where it's been the market leader for over 35 years.

Having never fulfilled that possibility, GM now learns what companies like Coca-Cola and Bacardi learned in the aftermath of the Cuban revolution and what newcomers to the Cuban business climate like Airbnb and Carnival are likely to learn in the near future: in a socialist/communist environment, corporations never really own their property.

Auto parts are among the many products that have been hard to acquire in Venezuela - food and medicine have also been chronically short in the economically devastated country.

GM plans to fight the seizure in court, the AP reports.

And today General Motors said it will halt operations in Venezuela after the government seized one of its auto plants.

"In 2014 the government announced the "temporary" takeover of two plants belonging to US cleaning products maker Clorox Co., which had left the country", Reuters reports. Under the late Hugo Chavez, Venezuela seized some Exxon Mobil assets.

That sets the stage for prolonged disruption in volatile Venezuela, where security forces have been blocking rallies this month and protests have dissolved into clashes with rock-throwing youth. This government, this regime, is making life miserable, and we can not accept it.'.

On Wednesday, two people were shot dead as thousands of Venezuelans took part in protests against Mr Maduro demanding fresh elections and the release of jailed opposition politicians.

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