WASHINGTON - MAY 31: U.S. President George W. Bush (R) shakes hands with Maria Corina Machado (L), Executive Director of Sumate, May 31, 2005 in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, DC. Sumate is an organization that helps Venezuelan people to fight for their political rights. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)2005 Getty Images
Venezuelan opposition candidate María Corina Machado, who is running in the opposition primary to present a united front candidate to face off against President Hugo Chávez, is vowing to return back to the pro-Chávez neighborhood where she was attacked by gun-fire shown in a video posted on YouTube Saturday.
The video shows Machado speaking to reporters and followers after throwing out a ceremonial first pitch in local softball game in a well known community in Caracas called Comunidad del 23 de Enero, which is now the center of Chávez's political following. Towards the end of the video clip gun shots rang out causing everyone to duck and run to safety.
El Nacional newspaper in Venezuela reports that there were 15 shots fired.
The Machado supporters quickly hustled the presidential candidate into a van yelling "Vamos, Vamos, Vamos" or "Let's go! Let's go! Let's go!"
"These attacks strengthen our spirit and the spirit of all of the mothers who are charged with protecting their families. My promise is to continue and with renewed reason," she said.
Chávez is so widely supported in the Comunidad del 23 Enero that he chose a local school there to cast his vote in previous elections.
"There can't be excluded zones in Venezuela, not even in Comunidad del 23 de Enero, nor at the borders...this goes against freedom," Machado said in a press release Saturday night.
Machado rose in politics as an independent and is set to run in the primary elections on February 12, 2012 that will represent the opposition in a presidential election race against Chávez in October.
Contains reporting from the Associated Press.