Maduro assassination plot suspect dies in mysterious fall from window

Opponents of Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro demonstrate in front of the SEBIN intelligence service where the government says opposition councillor Fernando Alban committed suicide

Interior Minister Nestor Luis Reverol said he had jumped from a window while waiting to be brought to court.

According to the opposition party's coordinator Julio Borges, Alban's lifeless body was then thrown from the SEBIN's headquarters, located on Caracas' Plaza Venezuela.

Fernando Alban, a Caracas city council member accused of taking part in a failed drone attack on President Nicolas Maduro, was in pretrial detention Monday at the time of his death, which the government presented as a suicide.

Opposition leader Julio Borges, who led the delegation to the United Nations, said Alban's wife told him that her husband had been under intense pressure to testify against him in the ongoing probe into the alleged plot in early August to kill Maduro using two drones loaded with explosives.

As global criticism of Maduro's government grew, Alban's family, fellow politicians and family members of other jailed activists paid a final tribute to him Tuesday in a ceremony at the opposition-controlled Congress.

That account differed from the one by chief prosecutor Tarek Saab, who said in televised statements that Mr Alban had asked to use a bathroom and jumped from there.

"We are concerned about news of his death".

Borges added that Alban was a devout Catholic and family man who would never consider killing himself. On Monday, Reverol said Alban had also been investigated for "destabilising activities directed from overseas". Corker was in Caracas on Monday to meet with government officials and the opposition to assess Venezuela's economic crisis.

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The visiting United States chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Bob Corker, said on Twitter that the government had a "responsibility to ensure all understand how that could have happened".

The opposition claims that more than 100 Venezuelans opposed to Maduro are being held as "political prisoners", some for more than four years, with little access to the outside world and their legal rights routinely trampled on.

Authorities have arrested at least 30 people linked to the drone explosions on August 2, which injured seven soldiers.

"They have tried to assassinate me today, and everything points to the Venezuelan ultra-right and the Colombian ultra-right", Maduro said the same day.

Alban's lawyer, Joel Garcia, told reporters that when he last saw Alban on Sunday "he was not beaten, he was fine".

The Organization of American States (OAS) condemned Alban's death.

"This criminal dictatorship should leave Venezuela now", he tweeted.

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