Maduro loyalists cancel Guaidó’s immunity
by Onize Ohikere
Posted 4/03/19, 11:33 am
Venezuelan lawmakers loyal to embattled President Nicolás Maduro on Tuesday stripped opposition leader Juan Guaidó of his parliamentary immunity, giving them power them to arrest and prosecute him. The Constituent Assembly, made up entirely of Maduro supporters, voted unanimously for the move. Guaidó constitutionally declared himself interim president on Jan. 23, increasing international pressure on Maduro to step down amid a social and economic crisis in Venezuela.
The Venezuelan chief prosecutor’s office opened an investigation into Guaidó’s links to “incidents of violence” in January. In February, Guaidó defied a Supreme Court order barring him from leaving the country by touring several Latin American nations to garner support for his presidency. He called the Constituent Assembly’s latest action against him a cowardly attempt to crack down on the opposition, saying, “We will not change our path.”
Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., tweeted that following the decision of the “illegitimate congress” violates the Venezuelan Constitution. “And anyone who cooperates with this should be treated as a coup plotter & dealt with accordingly,” he said.
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Onize is a reporter for WORLD Digital based in Abuja, Nigeria.