Grand closure of campaign in support of the Constituent Assembly in Venezuela

Grand closure of campaign in support of the Constituent Assembly in Venezuela

The Opposition has called fresh nationwide demonstrations in defiance of a new government ban on rallies ahead of Sunday's controversial vote to elect a body to rewrite the Constitution. "Arrest millions of people who protest?" opposition leader Henrique Capriles told reporters Friday. At least four people were killed in last week's general strike.

Thousands of Venezuelans loaded with heavy bags have crossed the border into Colombia this week, fleeing the unrest.

Washington has imposed successive rounds of sanctions on members of Maduro's administration and U.S. Vice-President Mike Pence on Friday promised "strong and swift economic actions" after Sunday's vote.

Across the city, residents said they wanted President Nicolas Maduro out of power but didn't want to risk their lives or livelihoods taking on his socialist government and its backers.

"This constituent assembly is of a spurious origin and, therefore, we can not recognize its [election] results", Santos said at a university in Barranquilla, as quoted by the presidential office. Protesters say the election of a constitutional assembly will allow Maduro to eliminate democratic checks and balances and install an authoritarian single-party system.

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The travel advisory added that Venezuelan security forces had arrested "individuals, including US citizens, and detained them for long period with little or no evidence of a crime" or "access to proper medical care, clean water and food". His finance minister also told a local radio station the neighboring nation would sanction the same 13 former and current Venezuelan officials cited by the USA on Wednesday.

Opposition has called for a "Take Over of Venezuela" march on Friday against President Maduro's Constituent Assembly vote on Friday.

The assembly is to be tasked with amending the constitution passed under Maduro's late predecessor and mentor, Hugo Chavez.

The country's chief prosecutor reported Thursday via Twitter that a 16-year-old died at a protest in the capital overnight and a 23-year-old man was slain in a demonstration in Merida state.

Opposition leader Leopoldo Lopez holds a Venezuelan national flag as he greets supporters outside his home in Caracas on July 8.

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Some employees said they would vote on Sunday to avoid the fate of those fired after a government lawmaker published a list of Venezuelans who signed a petition demanding a recall referendum against Chavez.

In announcing the USA sanctions, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said America was "standing by the Venezuelan people in their quest to restore their country to a full and prosperous democracy".

The United Nations human rights office said it was "deeply concerned" about the "very tense and very hard situation" in Venezuela.

NAN reports that the Constituent Assembly would have power to rewrite the constitution and shut down the existing opposition-led legislature, which the opposition maintains would cement dictatorship in Venezuela.

Colombia Migration Director Christian Kruger said Friday the status will be good for up to two years and let recipients work and receive social security benefits.

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Rubio said Secretary of the Treasury Steve Mnuchin had been involved in the issue, and that Trump had spoken to Secretary of State Rex Tillerson about Venezuela this week.

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