Venezuela

Voice of America / Wikimedia Commons http://bit.ly/2tX0x9X

Tensions continue to escalate in Venezuela after results from what many are calling a "sham" election granted a new legislative body the power to rewrite the Constitution.

The move is widely seen as a turning point for the oil-rich Latin American country – away from democracy, toward dictatorship.  

Updated 8:40 p.m. ET

Venezuelan security agents arrested two key opposition leaders in a midnight raid on their homes, making good on President Nicolas Maduro's promise to crack down on dissent following a vote that gave him broad authoritarian powers.

From Texas Standard:

Authorities say 10 people were killed in clashes between protesters and law enforcement in Venezuela on Sunday. The nation's president, Nicolas Maduro, called elections to choose a constituent assembly, which would have the power to rewrite the constitution and more.

Venezuela's ongoing political and economic crisis has taken a toll on daily life there.

A crash in oil prices and political instability under President Nicolas Maduro have led to food shortages, and that has prompted almost daily street protests by thousands of Venezuelans.

A 35-year-old protester named Carlos tells NPR's Audie Cornish the food situation is "pretty extreme." NPR is using only his first name for his safety.

From Texas Standard:

Last week, dozens of Venezuelans living in Texas protested in front of the Venezuelan consulate in Houston, in support of their country’s opposition movement. Anti-government protests in Venezuela are entering their third week and at least five people have died so far in clashes between protesters and riot police.

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