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Venezuela's constituent assembly names interim prosecutor general
From:Xinhua  |  2017-08-06 04:53

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CARACAS, Aug. 5 (Xinhua) -- Venezuela's newly-installed National Constituent Assembly (ANC) on Saturday dismissed the sitting prosecutor general Luisa Ortega Diaz, and named her successor.

In its first order of business since being sworn in on Friday, the 538-member ANC, the country's new legislative body, approved a proposal by the Supreme Court of Justice (TSJ) to suspend Ortega, who had become an outspoken critic of the ruling PSUV socialist party.

Venezuela's ombudsman Tarek William Saab was named "provisional prosecutor general" by unanimous decision.

Ortega, who faces trial on charges of helping fuel opposition violence, has had her assets frozen and has been barred from leaving the country.

Ortega was once a PSUV militant, but came to increasingly criticize President Nicolas Maduro and his administration.

ANC member Diosdado Cabello, a close Maduro aide, said Ortega had not been stripped of her duties for political reasons.

"We have proposed not only that she be suspended (as the TSJ recommended), but that she be removed as the investigation proceeds," said Cabello.

Differences between the government and Ortega came to a head at the start of April, after the supreme court decided to temporarily take on the legislative powers of the National Assembly, or Congress.

In a bid to move past the political deadlock, Maduro in May proposed the election of a constituent assembly to draft a new constitution. The elections were held on July 30.