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Understanding what's behind Venezuela's crisis




Here, opposition leader Maria Corina Machado, center, marched with opponents of President Nicolas Maduro in Caracas to mark International Women's Day. The crisis in the country hit new levels this week, with a new round of protests planned and Maduro extended a state of emergency.
Here, opposition leader Maria Corina Machado, center, marched with opponents of President Nicolas Maduro in Caracas to mark International Women's Day. The crisis in the country hit new levels this week, with a new round of protests planned and Maduro extended a state of emergency.
Federico Parra/AFP/Getty Images

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Today in Venezuela, opposition leaders say they've planned protests to hit the streets in Caracas and other major cities. President Nicolás Maduro and his supporters say it's a coup in the making. Meanwhile, hospitals are in crisis mode, and residents face electricity shortages and long waits for basic goods.

So how did the country get to this point?

For more, we're joined by Miguel Tinker Salas. He's a profesor of Latin American History at Pomona College and author of Venezuela: What Everyone Needs to Know and Una Herrencia que Perdura, Petróleo, Cultura y Sociedad en Venezuela.