Monday, Jul. 17, 2017

The Latest: Venezuela opposition calls for national strike

By The Associated Press

CARACAS, Venezuela (AP) — The Latest on Venezuela's political confrontation (all times local):

2:15 p.m.

Venezuelan opposition leaders are calling for a 24-hour national strike starting Thursday to protest government plans to rewrite the constitution and consolidate political power.

The opposition-controlled National Assembly also says it will name new members of the country's supreme court, a move certain to be blocked by President Nicolas Maduro's administration. The court is controlled by loyalists of Maduro's ruling socialist party.

The opposition is calling on the government to call off the July 30 election of members of a constitutional assembly that would remake the country's political system.

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11:55 a.m.

Venezuelan opposition leaders are calling on supporters to escalate street protests after more than 7 million people rejected a government plan to rewrite the constitution and consolidate its power.

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.

A coalition of some 20 opposition parties planned to formally call Monday for the launch of what it called the "zero hour" campaign of civil disobedience in the two weeks leading to the government vote. More than 100 days of opposition protests have left at least 93 people dead and 1,500 wounded.

National Assembly President Julio Borges told local radio station that the opposition has to "escalate and deepen this street movement."

2017-07-17 18:23:17 GMT

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