Venezuela's Opposition Sets General Strike

Trump threatens to impose sanctions against Venezuela

The proposed constitution is deeply unpopular as it would effectively give Maduro the power to dissolve all government bodies, including the opposition-packed National Assembly.

Sunday's unofficial poll was held in improvised polling across Venezuela and in more than 100 countries around the world.

Maduro has rejected calls fora new presidential election before the scheduled 2018 vote.

"They (MUD) have a quiet consultation today (.) I tell them not to go insane, we make a call for them to return to peace, to sit down and talk, to begin a new cycle of dialogue for peace", said Maduro during a telephone interview with the state-owned Venezolana de Television.

The opposition blamed a "paramilitary" gang for the shooting, which prosecutors said they would investigate.

"We call on the whole country to launch a 24-hour national strike this Thursday, a massive, non-violent protest, as a way to pressure the government and to prepare for the final steps, which will be next week, to confront this fraud. and to restore constitutional order", he said. The coalition has said it will do that in coming days to keep the vote secret and prevent reprisals by officials.

Fox traveled to Venezuela Saturday with a group of Latin American former presidents to show support for the opposition referendum.

Maduro and the military dominate most state institutions but the opposition controls the National Assembly and holds three of 23 governorships.




The Brazilian government says an opposition-organized referendum in Venezuela is "unequivocal proof" that the people there want to see the restoration of the democratic rule of law.

Fox said he left Venezuela as planned Monday and hadn't been personally notified of any action by the Venezuelan government.

"I thought it was going to be more", said Mariela Arana, a 56-year-old school counselor.

The chief prosecutor's office confirmed Escot - who was a nurse - had been killed and four others wounded in the incident. The most recent protests erupted in April after the country's Supreme Court tried to take over legislative powers from the opposition-controlled National Assembly.

In the wake of Nicolas Maduro succeeding former socialist president Hugo Chavez after the latter died from cancer in 2013, the country has been marred by violence and social upheaval.

Mogherini suggested that "a large part of the population clearly does not seem to support the Constituent Assembly" and that there is a need of exploring "urgent peaceful solutions".

The Protesters' motivation was boosted at the beginning of May when Maduro announced he would call up a constituent assembly to rewrite the country's constitution. They also voted for the armed forces to defend the current constitution. However the vote, dismissed by Mr Maduro as illegal, was largely boycotted by government supporters.

Opponents of Venezuela's government blame it for turning one of the region's most prosperous countries into an economic basket case with a shrinking economy, soaring inflation and widespread shortages.

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