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    Opposition supporters clash with riot police during a rally against President Nicolas Maduro in Caracas, Venezuela, May 8, 2017.

    Venezuelan Authorities Prolong Economic Emergency for 8th Time

    © REUTERS / Carlos Garcia Rawlins
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    The Venezuelan government has prolonged the economic emergency in the country for 60 days since July 13, the presidential order published by the Gaceta Oficial government newspaper said on Wednesday.

    MEXICO CITY (Sputnik) — This is the eighth prolongation of the economic emergency initially declared by Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro declared on January 15, 2016. The country’s opposition blamed Maduro for the economic crisis in the country, which has seen multiple mass protests amid shortages of food, goods and services.

    The current prolongation was approved against the background of the mass protests in Venezuela that started in early April, sparked by the decision of the country’s Supreme Court to curb the powers of the opposition-controlled National Assembly. The decision was reversed almost immediately, however, the opposition took to the streets, demanding the resignation of the judges and a snap election.

    In May, Maduro announced his decision to call the National Constituent Assembly, which was regarded by the opposition as an attempted coup and resulted in further escalation of tensions and unrest that resulted in the deaths of over 90 people overall.

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    emergency, Nicolas Maduro, Venezuela
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