Thursday, March 30, 2017

Venezuela top court to assume congress role; opposition decries 'dictatorship'

Venezuela's Supreme Court said it would take over the opposition-led Congress's role because the legislature is in "contempt," sparking accusations that President Nicolas Maduro's administration is becoming a dictatorship.

While the pro-Maduro court has annulled many of the National Assembly's decisions since the opposition won a majority in late 2015, it had not directly taken over functions.

Late on Wednesday, however, it authorized Maduro to create oil joint ventures without congressional approval.

"We warn that as long as the situation of contempt in the National Assembly continues, this constitutional chamber guarantees that congressional functions will be exercised by this chamber or another chosen organ," the court said in a ruling ....