Feb. 22 (UPI) -- At least two people died in fighting Friday at the Venezuela border when troops loyal to President Nicolas Maduro opened fire on citizens attempting to keep the border open to accept humanitarian aid this weekend.
The shooting occurred on Venezuela's southern border with Brazil in the village of Kumarakapai. The gunfire started when volunteers stood in front of military vehicles, defying them to close the border route, The Washington Post reported.
About 30 protesters were involved, of whom 12 were injured. The dead demonstrator was a woman identified as Zorayda Rodriguez.
"The majority of the people support the entrance of humanitarian aid, and we want to keep our border open," protester Carmen Elena Silva said. "This is help, not war ... Every day more children die."
Thursday, Maduro closed the Venezuela-Brazil border, citing the planned delivery of foreign aid against his wishes. Nearly 200 tons of aid are set to be delivered at the border Saturday.
Maduro has said the aid shipments are an attempt to undermine his administration.
Opposition leader Juan Guaido, who has declared himself interim president of Venezuela and is supported by the United States and other Western nations, has been working to bring relief aid into Venezuela.
Maduro's government on Thursday received 7.5 metric tons of medicine and food from Russia, "that we paid for with money from the Republic for the benefit of people" according to a Thursday tweet by Maduro..
Spain's El Pais quoted vice president Delcy Rodríguez saying on Thursday that Venezuela would accept about $2 million in European food and medicine aid, in what would be the countrys first recognition it needs humanitarian aid.
Maduro has announced plans to distribute Venezuelan aid to Colombia on Saturday.