Venezuelan pro-government assembly takes congress' powers

Venezuelan pro-government assembly takes congress' powers
In this August 4 file photo, Venezuela's Constituent Assembly poses for an official photo after being sworn in. Photo: AP Photo/Ariana Cubillos, File

Venezuela's pro-government constitutional assembly is taking over the powers of the opposition-led congress.

Delegates to the all-powerful assembly unanimously approved a decree giving it the authority to pass legislation on a range of issues affecting Venezuela's security and sovereignty.

The dramatic move follows a refusal by the congressional leadership to swear an oath of loyalty to the assembly, whose election the opposition considers illegitimate.

The government has argued that opposition MPs behind months of anti-government protests are working with the US to violently oust President Nicolas Maduro.

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