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Head of Venezuela's Congress vows in-depth review of country's top court

Paintings of Venezuelan independence hero Simon Bolivar decorate the stairs of the National Assembly building in Caracas, Venezuela, Monday, Jan. 11, 2016. 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. (AP Photo/Fernando Llano)

Paintings of Venezuelan independence hero Simon Bolivar decorate the stairs of the National Assembly building in Caracas, Venezuela, Monday, Jan. 11, 2016. 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. (AP Photo/Fernando Llano)

The head of Venezuela's new opposition-led Congress says lawmakers will carry out an in-depth review of the Supreme Court, setting up a clash of powers in the bitterly divided country.

National Assembly President Henry Ramos Allup referred to the court as "that execution squad" in his announcement on Saturday.

Opponents accuse the socialist government of packing the court with supporters who always side with the administration. The court recently disqualified three newly elected opposition legislators, stripping their bloc of the two-thirds majority needed for some major decisions.

Ramos Allup declined to give details of what the probe might involve.

Shortages, soaring inflation and a sharp plunge in oil revenues have battered the government's popularity, leading to opposition victories in December's congressional elections.

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