Venezuelan president survives 'drone assassination attempt'

Nicolas Maduro blamed the 'ultra-right' and Colombia for the apparent attack

Venezuelan president survives 'drone assassination attempt'

Security members protect Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro after his speech was interrupted in Caracas, Venezuela. Picture by: Xinhua/Xinhua News Agency/PA Images

The Venezuelan government has said an apparent drone explosion near the country's president was an "assassination" attempt against him.

Nicolas Maduro was making a live televised speech at a military event in Caracas when a number of drones approached the area.

Those in attendance were seen looking upwards in alarm as two drones apparently detonated.

The incident led to the broadcast being cut short.

Mr Maduro was not hurt in the incident, but seven soldiers were reportedly injured.

In a speech following the attack, the Venezuelan leader blamed 'ultra-right wing' factions for the attack.

In this still from a video provided by Venezolana de Television, Presiden Nicolas Maduro, center, delivers his speech as his wife Cilia Flores winces and looks up after being startled by and explosion, in Caracas, Venezuela. Venezolana de Television via AP

He claimed: "Without a doubt we have revealed the situation in record time - this was an attempt to kill me.

"Today they attempted to assassinate me, and I have no doubt that everything points to the right - the Venezuelan far-right, in alliance with the Colombian far-right, and that the name of [President of Colombia] Juan Manuel Santos is behind this attack"

In a statement, Colombia's foreign ministry said it 'emphatically rejected' the accusations.

They said the allegations of Colombian responsibility are "absurd and lack any foundation".

The statement adds: "It is already customary for the Venezuelan leader to blame Colombia for any type of situation. We demand respect for President Juan Manual Santos, for the government and for the Colombian people."

One group called Soldiers Franelas claimed responsibility for the attack, claiming the drones were shot down before reaching the 'presidential box'.

There was no independent verification of their claims.