President Maduro's camp is considering early elections

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The President of the Constituent Assembly of Venezuela, Diosdado Cabello, in Caracas, at the meeting of 12 August.
The President of the Constituent Assembly of Venezuela, Diosdado Cabello, in Caracas, at the meeting of 12 August. MANAURE QUINTERO / REUTERS

The Constituent Assembly of Venezuela, close to Socialist President Nicolas Maduro, announced Monday, August 12, that it was planning to call early parliamentary elections to renew the Parliament.

"I will propose a commission (…) to evaluate, in accordance with the law, the Constitution and the political situation of our country, with consultations of all the organizations, the people, the street, when will be the best moment of to proceed to these elections "said the president of the Constituent Assembly (ANC), Diosdado Cabello, during a meeting.

"If it results from this consultation that it must be the 1st January (2020), we will organize these elections of the National Assembly onst January. If it turns out that these elections must be held this year (…), they will be done as the consultation says ", said the number two of the chavist regime, who hopes to give "This information to the country in the coming days".

Elections to renew the National Assembly, chaired by opponent Juan Guaido, are initially scheduled for 2020.

The opposition won a majority in Parliament in December 2015 for a period of five years, but soon after taking office, the Supreme Court of Justice (TSJ), an institution deemed close to the government of Nicolas Maduro, was declared null and void. his works.

Read also New blackout in Venezuela, the government denounces "an attack"

'Persecution'

The fully empowered Constituent Assembly was elected in a disputed poll in July 2017 to bypass the opposition-dominated parliament after months of anti-Maduro demonstrations that left 125 people dead. Its mandate, extended in May until the end of 2020, included the drafting of a new Constitution by August 2019, but no project has been made public so far.

Juan Guaido, recognized president of Venezuela by about fifty countries, including the United States, reacted on Twitter: "The dictatorship has become predictable in the only tool it has left: persecution. Yesterday (Sunday)we had warned of a new attack of the dictatorship. Today, they illegally pursue four new MPs and threaten to illegally anticipate the parliamentary elections. "

"None of these unconstitutional decisions has any validity or recognition: no one recognizes the false TSJ or the fraudulent Constituent Assembly; they only have repression. They prevent any peaceful solution to defend their affairs and personal interests ", he added.

The Supreme Court (TJS) launched a lawsuit on Monday against three deputies for high treason, who join the dozen parliamentarians already prosecuted as part of the failed military uprising on April 30 orchestrated by Mr. Guaido.

"This is a way to continue to annihilate the National Assembly, to prevent it from doing its job and to advance in the policy of intimidation that the government applies against those who think differently"responded MP Tomas Guanipa to the Venepress website.

Read also Venezuela: Guaido launches operation "Freedom", Maduro government denounces "coup attempt"

Hanging talks

The TSJ transmitted the opening of the proceedings to the Constituent Assembly, which lifted the parliamentary immunity of the deputies concerned so that they could be brought before ordinary courts.

Twenty deputies have already been deprived of their immunity and have taken refuge in diplomatic buildings, abroad, or have gone into hiding. "The time for the defense is over, now the revolutionary counter-attack", launched Diosdado Cabello during the Constituent Session, also convened to reject the sanctions announced on August 5 by US President Donald Trump, who had ordered a total freeze of property in the United States from the Venezuelan government.

Read also Anger in Venezuela after the drastic American sanctions

Venezuela is currently facing the toughest political and economic crisis in recent history, marked by recession, hyperinflation and the power struggle between Juan Guaido and Nicolas Maduro.

After exploratory contacts and a first meeting in mid-May in Oslo under the auspices of Norway, discussions between government officials and those of Juan Guaido resumed on July 8 in Barbados.

Maduro decided in early August to suspend the participation of its representatives in these talks in response to new US sanctions. Three days later, he said to himself "Ready to reach agreements" with the opposition.

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