Unrest as Venezuelan constitution rewrite nears

Sunday, almost 7.2 million Venezuelans voted in a hastily arranged referendum created to voice their opposition to the socialist president's plans to rewrite the country's constitution.

In the face of a debilitating economic crisis (the value of oil, #Venezuela's main export, has fallen by almost 70% and inflation is up 200%) and increasing political upheaval, Venezuela's president, Nicolas Maduro, scheduled a constitutional referendum to be held on July 30th.

Fox traveled to Venezuela Saturday with a group of Latin American former presidents to show support for the opposition referendum.

Analysts said the vote for the opposition across Venezuela and the country's far-flung diaspora was an impressive show of support.

"Overall this vote, I think, makes it hard for the government to just proceed as planned", Smilde said.

The chief prosecutor's office confirmed Escot - who was a nurse - had been killed and four others wounded in the incident.

Guevara said the opposition would only talk with the government if the constituent plan was withdrawn.

The opposition said 7,186,170 Venezuelans participated in a symbolic referendum rejecting President Nicolas Maduro's plans for the July 30 election of an assembly that would remake the political system.

In early July, armed pro-government militias supporting Venezuela's controversial President Nicolas Maduro stormed the country's Parliament, and assaulted several opposition deputies amid the ongoing anti-government protests in the South American country. "Let's start a new round of talks, of dialogue for peace".

More news: NASA releases closest photos yet of Jupiter's Great Red Spot

The opposition - which wants restaurants, shops and transport to come to a standstill on Thursday - said it would also take steps to set up a "national unity" government and name new alternative judges to the pro-Maduro Supreme Court.

The referendum comes almost two weeks before a Maduro-backed vote for a constituent assembly that would be tasked with rewriting the constitution without the opposition controlled national assembly.

In smaller numbers in many parts of the capital, government supporters also went to polling stations on Sunday in a rehearsal for the July 30 vote.

It is unclear what changes Maduro plans to enact, but opposition members fear any branch of government that doesn't fall in line with Maduro will be left powerless. The court nullified eight of the assembly's laws between January and October 2016, after making just one such ruling in the previous 200 years, legal experts say. That rewrite would have the capacity to dissolve the National Assembly, an opposition-heavy body of lawmakers that has been a source of frustration for Maduro for years.

"If they're forcing us, it isn't democracy", Madriz said.

"I have never seen a situation where opening times for a practice run of an election have to be extended", said Hector Rodriguez, head of the Zamora constituent campaign, at a press conference. They also want any and all political prisoners to be released.

In the referendum, Venezuelans were asked to respond "yes" or "no" to three questions. More than 500 people have been detained. The anti-government protests, and their clashes with government security forces, have seen almost 100 people killed and more than 1,500 injured in the three and a half months that followed.

Opponents of Venezuela's government blame it for turning one of the region's most prosperous countries into an economic basket case with a shrinking economy, soaring inflation and widespread shortages.

(Copyright © 2015. All Rights Reserved.)
 
Recommended

Samsung Galaxy Note 8: Check out specifications, price, release date
On the connectivity front, the smartphone offers 4G VoLTE, alongside Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, a 3.5mm audio jack, and a Micro-USB port. The Instant Share and Edit feature enables instant sharing of pictures with a single click on pinned social media applications.

South Korea offers direct talks with the North
A previous joint event was held in October 2015 to arrange the reunion of families separated by the 1950-1953 Korean War . The two declarations aim to foster cross-border cooperation, exchanges and reconciliation.

Data Breach at Sabre Hits Four Seasons and Other Hotels
The hotel chain learned of the breach in June 2015 but waited an additional four months to notify those affected. The hotel confirmed that they were not hacked themselves. "Well, because they're a good target", Peter W.

JD(U) holds Congress responsible for unrest in Kashmir
The official said curfew had also been imposed in Shopian town of south Kashmir and Trehgam in north Kashmir's Kupwara district. Burhan was among the new wave of tech-savy militants who used to leverage social media to recruit and influence Kashmiri youth.

Porte crashes out of Tour de France
It was a thrilling finish to a remarkable stage, but the nasty crashes for Thomas and Porte took the shine off the day's racing. He won stage one of this year's race and wore the leader's yellow jersey until Froome took it after stage five.

New York City Commuters Brace For 'Summer Of Hell'
Penn Station's woes sunk to a new low in May when dirty water, widely reported to have been sewage, gushed from the ceiling. Service has been stepped up by trains, buses and ferries in anticipation of the busier commute.

UK, EU Set To Open Next Round Of Brexit Talks In Brussels
The negotiation is expected to be complicated, as May's minority government will face challenges at every step in the process. But the plan took a considerable blow when the Tories lost their majority in the House of Commons at the general election.

Trump's Federal Bureau of Investigation pick Wray pledges 'impartial pursuit of justice'
On Wednesday, his nominee to lead the FBI, Christopher Wray , indicated that he does not agree. "Period", Christopher Wray told a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on his nomination.

Second Person In Custody In Connection With Killing Of 4 In Pennsylvania
Then on Wednesday, authorities arrested DiNardo on charges he tried to sell Meo's 1996 Nissan Maxima a day after he was last seen. On Monday, the suspected killer was also charged with being in possession of a shotgun in an unrelated case from February.

Microsoft's new plan to bring broadband to everyone in the US
But the company did not say how much the Rural Airband Initiative would cost or how much upfront money it would be contributing. He says the powerful bandwidth will allow wireless signals to travel over hills and through buildings and trees.

People Shot in Alabama, Manhunt Underway
It added that he's believed to be driving a 2007 Lincoln Navigator with a Florida license plate with the number 689NFN. Police in Lower Windsor Township confirmed they arrested Lever in 2015 on child sexual abuse charges.

Republicans Consider Ban on Gender Transition Surgeries for Troops
The ACLU is sending a letter to the House today to vote against this discriminatory and unconstitutional amendment. Hartzler said the measure would ensure the military's tax-funded budget is spent exclusively on defense purposes.

Air Canada Jet Nearly Lands On Taxiway At San Francisco International Airport
In December 2015, an Alaska Airlines Boeing 737 landed on a central taxiway at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport. Many instances could go unreported, and many times they involve smaller planes at smaller airports, he said.

Blac Chyna felt 'betrayed' by Rob Kardashian revenge porn scandal
Blac Chyna was granted a temporary restraining order against baby daddy Rob Kardashian , RadarOnline.com can exclusively confirm. Instead, Shapiro is going to focus his attention on Kardashian and Chyna's daughter, Dream .

Five facts about Wimbledon women's semi-finals
The American broke Konta in the final game of the first set, and then broke for the third time in the final game of the match. Now 37, Williams is the oldest woman to reach the Wimbledon final since Martina Navratilova in 1994 at the same age.


More News

News
More News