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Two anti-government protesters kiss during a protest against Venezuela’s President Nicolas Maduro’s government in Caracas. An intimate moment during a demonstration which resulted in the death of two protesters. The number of those dead since the start of anti-government protests two months ago has risen to 33.
Source: euronews.com Picture of the Day Mar. 23, 2014 – Respite During Anti-government Protest in Caracas

My big deal is that I cannot actually figure out if it is talking about the death of the young girl and boy in the picture or two other persons.

Based on my perception, because the writer did not put “the” before “two protesters”, the deaths have nothing to do with these two young people captured in the picture. The writer just wrote “the death of two protesters” not “the death of the two protesters.” Is this correct?

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1 Answer 1

I'm surprised you noticed this: it's extremely subtle. Congratulations. xD

You are right in saying that you would add in the definite article 'the', as the two protesters are described beforehand and are being referred to again.

However, there's another detail to this sentence. The 'intimate moment' they refer to is obviously their kiss. However, it is referred to as 'an intimate moment' rather than 'their intimate moment'.

The reason behind these two lapses of the definite article is that the sentence takes a detached, general viewpoint. It talks about the event as if it is a 'template', after describing one instance of that event.

The concept might be difficult to understand, but try to look out for these statements that are 'detached' from the story. They are simply generalising the event.

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