Venezuelan court nulls congress decisions over barred lawmakers

Venezuela's Supreme Court ruled on Monday that the new National Assembly's decisions are void unless three banned opposition lawmakers are removed from office, deepening a power struggle over the opposition's new legislative majority.
Already beset by a deep economic crisis, Venezuela now seems to be sliding into a protracted period of political turmoil as both a newly-emboldened opposition and President Nicolas Maduro's socialist government play hardball with each other.
The Supreme Court in December blocked four lawmakers - three opposition and one allied with the government - from taking office after the Socialist Party made allegations of irregularities during last month's legislative election.
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