In retaliation, the government-dominated assembly has barred opposition lawmakers from public speaking and sitting on legislative committees.
Both sides planned to take to the streets of Caracas on Wednesday for marches celebrating International Workers’ Day. Each appeared to be trying to avoid confrontation by choosing separate locations and calling for peaceful demonstrations, although fears of violence were running high.
Opposition candidate Henrique Capriles is boycotting an official audit of the election and plans to file a challenge seeking to overturn it in court.
On Tuesday, legislator Pedro Carreno, head of the governing United Socialist Party of Venezuela in the National Assembly, asked for an extension of the ban on public speaking by the opposition, whose members unfurled a banner reading “coup against the parliament.”
“Without a word, like cowards, they came at us from behind,” said Garcia, the opposition lawmaker.
Maduro accused the opposition of provoking the violence, which he condemned and called on the country to work out its disputes peacefully.
National Assembly chief Diosdado Cabello, considered one of the most powerful men in the country for his ties to the business community and army, has repeatedly defended barring opposition lawmakers from speaking. He said that if they don’t recognize the legitimacy of the presidential election, they are casting doubt on the national electoral system that elected them, thus losing their own legitimacy.
The opposition lawmakers have also lost their seats on legislative commissions.
Carreno described government backers’ action in the fight as self-defense.
“If I’m standing here and you come to attack me, it’s likely that I’ll react, but it’s the aggressor who went out with a black eye,” he said.
Associated Press writer Michael Weissenstein contributed to this report.
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