Venezuela opposition rally to coincide with start of new assembly

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CARACAS: Venezuela’s opposition will hold a protest rally Thursday to coincide with the expected inauguration of a new assembly that will rewrite the constitution in what has been decried as a power grab by President Nicolas Maduro. At the close of a day in which two prominent opposition leaders were arrested, the opposition announced the demonstration will be Thursday, instead of Wednesday as originally planned. The change came after opposition lawmaker Freddy Guevara said the Maduro government plans to install the “fraudulent” assembly on Thursday. It was elected Sunday amid protests and deadly violence but the government has not specified what day it would take up its seats. It just said within 72 hours of being elected. Early Tuesday the intelligence service hauled two prominent opposition leaders back to prison in the dead of night, triggering an international outcry as embattled Maduro moved to shore up his power after the election, widely denounced as a sham.

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AFP

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