Escalation in Venezuela: Maduro Detains, Voids Opposition Leader Capriles Passport

Venezuelan opposition activists protest against the government of President Nicolas Maduro in Caracas

As protests against the leftist government continued in the capital Caracas, he said his passport had been seized at the airport and would not be returned until 2020.

His statement came after a massive candle light vigil in Caracas that was held in honor of the Venezuelans who have died during the ongoing protests.

The new sanctions package was aimed at stepping up pressure on the leftist government of Venezuela n President Nicolas Maduro and his loyalists amid growing concern over a crackdown on street protests and his efforts to consolidate his rule over the South American oil-producing country.

The United States convened a meeting on Wednesday of the UN Security Council.

Across the country near the border with Colombia, clashes and lootings raged overnight, even though the government sent 2,000 troops to Tachira state.

The ruling was later partially reversed amid worldwide criticism, but it sparked a protest movement that has continued for almost two months and left more than 40 people dead.

Anti-government street mobilizations that began after the nation's Supreme Court issued a ruling stripping congress of its last powers in late March are continuing on a near-daily basis.

The state prosecution service said on Twitter the boy was killed "during a demonstration" there.

Hearse stolen from McDonald's, body dumped by the side of the road
Police said a passerby found a gurney with a body a few hours later in the 6000 block of Dick Elliott Rd in Brazos County. A body was dumped on the side of a Brazos County road Friday morning amid the theft of a hearse, according to KXAN .

In March, the court stripped parliamentary immunity from members of the National Assembly and moved to assume legislative powers for itself.

Russian Federation champions the political dialogue between the main political actors in Venezuela, with no interference by foreign powers or worldwide organizations, in order to guarantee stability and economic development for the country.

"For the sake of the Venezuelan people, and the security of the region", Haley said, "we must work together to ensure Maduro ends this violence and oppression and restores democracy to the people".

President Nicolas Maduro blames the opposition for the country's crisis and the deaths, which have occurred on all sides.

In March 2015, former President Barack Obama expanded US sanctions against Venezuelan officials and declared worsening relations with the South American nation to be a national emergency. On Thursday, several thousand demonstrators once again disrupted life in Caracas and other cities with protests that ended in clashes with security forces firing tear gas and rubber bullets, leaving more than 50 people injured.

Opposition leader Henrique Capriles said on Thursday that authorities confiscated his passport and prevented him from travelling to NY to discuss the country's crisis with United Nations officials.

The Florida Republican represents the state with the largest number of Venezuelans living in the United States, many of whom strongly oppose Maduro's socialist government.

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