Spain has indefinitely suspended the export of riot control equipment to Venezuela's government following weeks of unrest there which have seen an increase in violence as police face sustained protests by the opposition.

Speaking in Athens on Saturday, Foreign Minister José Manuel García Margallo said "it is a fact" that Spain has suspended sales because "it is logical not to add fuel to the fire when there is a conflict."

The decision was made by a government panel March 6, but only now confirmed publicly. García Margallo said Spain has a special interest in Venezuela because 200,000 Spaniards live there.

He said the government was following developments in Venezuela carefully because 30 Spaniards have been arrested by forces loyal to the socialist administration of President Nicolás Maduro.

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