Venezuela's Supreme Court has ordered the country's new opposition congress to unseat three barred lawmakers and is declaring that any action the body takes in the meantime is null.

The court published a decision Monday that said the congress' acts would be void while the three lawmakers were seated.

Supporters of the ruling socialist party challenged the election of three opposition lawmakers from the remote state of Amazonas after the government critics swept legislative elections in December. The election gave the opposition control of congress for the first time in 17 years.

The Supreme Court ordered that the three lawmakers in question not be seated until allegations of elections fraud had been addressed. But the opposition leadership swore them in anyway.