Amnesty urges ICC to probe Venezuela's alleged crimes against humanity under Maduro

Amnesty urges ICC to probe Venezuela's alleged crimes against humanity under Maduro”

Masked agents of Venezuela's police intelligence agency as well as National Guard troops stood around the perimeter of the National Assembly building on Tuesday morning.

The Supreme Court has indicted lawmakers Carlos Paparoni, Miguel Pizarro, Franco Casella and Winston Flores of treason and encouraging rebellion.

He said there were four protesters inside and that they still have enough food and water to continue the sit-in.

The UN resident coordinator met Monday with Maduro and other government officials in Caracas to discuss a proposed UN humanitarian response plan, UN officials said.

The threats that the US administration representatives and leader of the Venezuelan opposition Juan Guaido are addressing to Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro's government contradict the values of democracy, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said at a joint press conference with US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Tuesday.

Venezuelan Police block the entrance to the National Assembly.

Guaido has meanwhile been fighting to keep up the pressure on the embattled socialist leader since the opposition's bid to spark a military uprising fizzled on April 30.

Edgar Zambrano, the vice president of the assembly, was also arrested last week.

One opposition lawmaker was arrested and several took refuge in foreign embassies in Caracas or fled the country last week after similar accusations from the court.

"This is a dictatorship that goes after dissidents, and we are fighting for a political change", lawmaker Juan Pablo Guanipa told Reuters, referring to the blocking of congress.

Guaido's declaration that he is the country's legitimate acting president, which has been supported by more than 50 countries, plunged Venezuela into a political crisis.

Venezuela's information ministry, which handles media inquiries on behalf of the government, did not respond to a request for comment on why security forces blocked the entrance to parliament.

"The United States calls on all member states to be prepared to take concrete actions in response to the Maduro regime's repression throughout Venezuela", it added. "There will be a session of the National Assembly, be it under a bridge or on a square", daily El Nacional quoted Stefanelli as saying.

Maduro has repeatedly maintained that there is no humanitarian crisis in his country and that USA sanctions are to blame for the hardships of Venezuelans.

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