“Venezuela, they don't want us to turn ourselves in. They literally want to kill us, they just told us (so)…stay strong,” said Oscar Perez in one of the seven videos he posted to Instagram on January 15.
Mr Perez and his rebel group, who had been hiding out in a small house in the Caracas neighbourhood of El Junqito, were surrounded by police. After exchanging gunfire for nine hours, two policemen were killed, five rebels were captured while seven others lay dead, including Oscar Perez.
The next day, Venezuelan interior minister Nestor Reverol proclaimed that a “terrorist cell” had been “dismantled”. The millions who saw the whole episode play out live on social media, however, felt they witnessed something else—an extrajudicial mass killing.