Venezuela’s Maduro Consolidates Power

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CARACAS, Venezuela (AP) — Venezue­lan Pres­i­dent Nicolás Maduro’s polit­i­cal alliance claimed a sweep­ing vic­to­ry Mon­day in con­gres­sion­al elec­tions boy­cotted by the most influ­en­tial oppo­si­tion politi­cians and wide­ly crit­i­cized inter­na­tion­al­ly as being fraud­u­lent. The win gives Maduro con­trol of the last major branch of gov­ern­ment out­side his grasp. It plays out in the wan­ing days of the Trump admin­is­tra­tion, which leaves office with Maduro firm­ly entrenched despite its efforts to bring about his depar­ture through diplo­ma­cy and sanc­tions. “We have recov­ered the Nation­al Assem­bly with the major­i­ty vote of the Venezue­lan peo­ple,” Maduro said in a tele­vised address. “It’s a great vic­to­ry with­out a doubt for democracy.”Maduro’s Unit­ed Social­ist Par­ty of Venezuela and allied par­ties cap­tured 67% of seats in the Nation­al Assem­bly in Sunday’s elec­tion, said Indira …

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