Venezuela's electoral authorities have accepted 1.3 million signatures as valid on a petition for a referendum to remove President Nicolas Maduro, the opposition said Tuesday, a first step toward ousting the embattled leftist.
The decision moves the lengthy recall process on to the next step, in which 200,000 signatories must validate their identity with fingerprint scans.
The opposition would then have to gather four million more signatures to call a referendum on sacking Maduro, whom they blame for a spiraling economic crisis.
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