Venezuela's government erected a statue, in central Caracas, in honor to Guaicaipuro, the Indigenous chief who led the resistance against the Spanish colonialism 500 years ago.
The sculpture replaced a Christopher Columbus statue that stood there for over a century, until it was torn down in 2004 by a popular movement led by supporters of then President Hugo Chavez.
The statue was unveiled in a ceremony headed by President Nicolas Maduro and attended by top officials of the ruling United Socialist Party of Venezuela and dozens of Indigenous leaders.
Indigenous people represent about 1.5 percent of the total population of Venezuela, there are at least 26 nationalities, including the Ya̧nomamo, Pemon, Warao people, Baniwa people, Kali'na people, Motilone Bari, Ye'kuana, and Yaruro. In 2002, the South American nation began to celebrate October 12 as the Day of Indigenous Resistance.
Guaicaipuro is seen by Venezuelans as a symbol of the Indigenous resistance against the Spanish conquest, he is also well known because he formed a powerful coalition of different tribes which he led during part of the 16th Century against the Spanish troops in the central region of the country, specially in the Caracas valley.