- The Washington Times - Wednesday, May 1, 2013

A member of Venezuela’s assembly appeared on state television with a bruised, swollen and bloody head Tuesday evening, after a brawl erupted among lawmakers in a heated session over post-election powers.

An estimated 17 opposition members and five pro-government deputies were injured, The Associated Press reported.

The fight broke out after pro-government legislators began punching opposition members for their unfurling of a banner that protested their loss of powers, post-election, AP said. Opposition members won’t accept President Nicolas Maduro — the late Hugo Chavez’s handpicked successor — as the rightful leader, and say his win was due to election fraud.

He only won the April 14 vote by a 1.49 percent margin, AP said.

Mr. Maduro’s government supporters have taken revenge on the opposition members and refused to let them sit on legislative committees, AP said.

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