Mexico protecting Venezuelan opposition lawmaker

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Mexico says its diplomatic residence in Venezuela‘s capital is providing protection to a member of that country’s opposition-controlled congress.

The foreign affairs ministry says National Assembly member Franco Manuel Casella Lovaton arrived at the residence Tuesday.

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Casella is president of the congress subcommittee on human rights and a member of opposition leader Juan Guaidó’s Popular Will party. Guaidó is leading the effort to remove Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro, with the backing of the United States and other countries.

Mexico says giving refuge to Casella does not negate its non-intervention stance on the crisis in Venezuela. Mexico says it is committed to human rights and wants to emphasize its support for parliamentary immunity for Venezuelan lawmakers.

Venezuela’s government-allied courts have lifted the immunity for some legislators and opened investigations against them.