German businessman killed in Venezuelan capital

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Associated Press

Posted on June 18, 2014 at 11:37 PM

CARACAS, Venezuela (AP) — A German businessman was killed Wednesday in the Venezuelan capital during a shootout at a five-star hotel, officials said.

Venezuelan authorities say the visitor was killed hours after arriving in Caracas in what appears to have been a botched robbery attempt. One of his suspected assailants was also killed.

The Attorney General's Office said several armed men intercepted the businessman and his escort as they entered the upscale Eurobuilding hotel with their luggage.

In the ensuing confrontation, a guard was injured, the German was shot several times, and an alleged assailant was killed. The German later died at a hospital.

President Nicolas Maduro referred to the assault during an address Wednesday night, calling it a strange incident and adding that authorities were moving quickly to identify the culprits.

Violence is soaring in Venezuela, and the country's murder rate is among the highest in the world. The government has struggled to reassure tourists and international institutions that the country remains a safe place to visit.

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