For several months, people in Venezuela have taken to the streets in opposition of the country’s president, Nicolas Maduro.
On Sunday, Venezuelans across the globe took part in an unofficial but symbolic vote to denounce President Maduro plans to change Venezuela’s 1999 constitution, which many fear is part of an even bigger plan to hold onto power.
Ana Nelson is a volunteer with the Association of Venezuelans in San Antonio. Nelson said that more than 1,200 Venezuelans in San Antonio cast their votes on Sunday.
“There's been 80 deaths in over 100 days. There are more expected. It's just a horrific situation,” Nelson said. “This gives them the opportunity to voice their opinions. They do not want that type of government in their country.”
President Maduro's actions have caused turmoil and protests, which have killed hundreds and injured thousands. Michael Allen lives in San Antonio but is a Venezuelan resident and owns a business there.
“This is the only opportunity for the Venezuelan people to speak in a clear manner about the lack of rights, the thieving, corruption that exists at the highest level of government,” he said.
Venezuelans voted in 80 countries, even as far as Rome, Italy.
Sunday's vote might not have any real impact since it does not have the endorsement of the National Electoral Council. Still, many voters hope it will send a strong message that they support some of their own friends and families still in Venezuela.