A sign for the 405 freeway in Los Angeles on July 14 identifies the road that will be closed for construction from July 15 to 17. 'Carmageddon' is the name Angelenos are giving the likely epic traffic tie-up that will result from closing the 405 freeway between two of the nation's busiest interchanges. Eric Thayer/Reuters
Traffic moves slowly on the 405 freeway in Los Angeles on July 14, a day before the freeway will be closed for construction and probably cause traffic jams in the city. Eric Thayer/Reuters
A sign warns drivers of the closure of the Interstate 405 freeway in Los Angeles on July 13. Beginning on July 15, authorities will begin shutting down a 10-mile segment of the 405 freeway for 53 hours so crews can demolish one side of the Mulholland Drive Bridge as part of a $1 billion highway improvement project. Damian Dovarganes/AP
Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa pleads with Los Angeles residents to stay away from the 405 freeway on the weekend of July 16 to 17 during a news conference at the Sherman Oaks Galleria mall on July 13. Damian Dovarganes/AP
A banner informs visitors of the upcoming 405 freeway closure at the Santa Monica-UCLA Medical Center in Santa Monica, Calif., on July 14. The UCLA Health System has three helicopter companies on standby to transport patients and human organs in the event of emergency operations. Damian Dovarganes/AP
Traffic flows on the 405 freeway in Los Angeles on July 13. Damian Dovarganes/AP
Hospital custodians Orlando Rojas (l.) and Blanca Rodriguez set up cots to be used by more than one hundred UCLA medical personnel ahead of Carmageddon, the Interstate 405 freeway closure, at the Santa Monica-UCLA Medical Center in Santa Monica, Calif., on July 14. Damian Dovarganes/AP
FlyAway buses provide shuttle service between Los Angeles International airport and three Los Angeles locations. A 10-mile stretch of Interstate 405 — a vital artery that links population centers north and south of the Santa Monica Mountains — is shutting down for 53 hours this weekend, which may disrupt the bus service. Damian Dovarganes/AP
Freedom for Judge Maria Lourdes Afiuni was a cause célèbre among dissidents and human rights groups critical of the Chávez regime. Venezuela conditionally released her after three years in detention.
Andrew Rosati, Correspondent /
June 17, 2013
Carlos Garcia Rawlins/Reuters
Jailed Judge Maria Lourdes Afiuni, often referred to as “Hugo Chávez’s political prisoner,” was freed on Friday after spending more than three years in detention. Following petitions from international bodies and human rights groups, the court decision immediately ignited social media networks, with many celebrating the release as a victory for human rights and Venezuela's political opposition.