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Venezuelan opposition wins supermajority in National Assembly

Election officials in Venezuela confirmed Tuesday evening that a coalition of opposition parties won two-thirds of the seats in the country’s National Assembly following elections on Sunday.

The final results showed that the Democratic Unity Roundtable won 112 seats, including three seats reserved for indigenous candidates, and the ruling United Socialist Party of Venezuela won 55.

The opposition’s victory is the first time it has won a national election since former President Hugo Chávez and his socialist political movement came to power in 1998. President Nicolas Maduro, who succeeded Chavez, will now have to work with National Assembly controlled by the opposition, and promised he would protect his predecessor’s socialist revolution against what he described as “bad guy” leaders of the opposition.

The new National Assembly faces issues including high inflation in Venezuela, shortages of basic necessities like toilet paper, and rising crime. Jeffrey Davidow, former U.S. ambassador to Venezuela, said that there will be no simple solutions to these issues.

“The world has to realize that Venezuela is broken in so many places, economically and institutionally, that the task ahead of repairing it is enormous,” Davidow told the LA Times.

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