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Venezuela Election 2013 Protests: Thousands Rally Against Chavez's Heir Maduro

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Venezuelan Government Issues Arrest for Opposition Leader Henrique Capriles

Picture Credit: www.critica.com

The Venezuelan government issued an arrest order for opposition leader Henrique Capriles late last night, according to reports from a Spanish news publication. This follows opposition demands of a vote recount under suspicion of voter fraud, which has led to civil unrest and 7 reported deaths.

Capriles is now technically a fugitive, all because he asked for a recount following the most narrow election victory in decades. Maduro initially agreed to the recount, since Capriles guaranteed foul play in the election.

Now it seems Maduro no longer needs the recount. In fact, Venezuela’s Supreme Court now declares that a recount isn’t even legally required. Judge Luisa Morales, who facilitated Maduro’s entrance as interim president a few months back, insists that a manual count is impossible, due to Venezuela’s mostly electronic voting system, even though each vote produces a paper receipt.

In addition, Diosdado Cabello, head of the National Assembly, conducted a hearing today in which he asked opposition members if they recognized Maduro as the president. Those who declined were denied the right to speak and were thrown out of the hearing.

Systematic electoral corruption in Venezuela isn’t necessarily news. In fact, arresting Capriles wouldn’t be news either, considering he’s already been arrested for belonging to the opposition. However, things will get interested the more this becomes a world issue. The question is, will this help or hinder Venezuela's path to freedom?

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Venezuela Election Protests: 7 Dead, 61 Injured in Street Violence

After a Sunday presidential vote that split Venezuelans between Hugo Chavez's heir Nicolas Maduro and popular opposition candidate Henrique Capriles, supporters of both candidates have taken to streets to protest what each side sees as the illegitimate nature of the opposing campaign. 

Maduro supporters, or Chavistas, who insist their candidate's narrow victory (200,000+ votes) is legitimate and constitutional deride Capriles supporters as "right-win," "fascists," and "Zionists" (Capriles' mother is Jewish) and accuse them of instigating violence and even plotting a coup d'etat against Maduro. However, Capriles supporters say Maduro stole the election — given to what they see as the 14-year-old regime's abuses of power, cronyism and corruption. Meanwhile, Venezuela's Attorney General Luisa Ortega Diaz told Reuters on Tuesday that the post-election toll has risen to seven dead and 61 injured — which she unsurprisingly blames on the opposition.  

Venezuela Election 2013 Protests: Thousands Rally Against Chavez's Heir Maduro

Thousands of supporters of Venezuelan opposition candidate Henrique Capriles took to the streets of Caracas and other cities banging pots, burning trash bags and chanting in protest for what their candidate sees as "fraudulent results" of the OPEC country's Sunday election to elect a successor to the late socialist leader Hugo Chavez. 

From Yahoo Australia:

Monday's demonstration erupted as the National Electoral Council (CNE) certified the victory of acting President Nicolas Maduro against opposition leader Henrique Capriles, who refused to concede defeat and demanded a full recount.


 

Venezuela Presidential Election 2013 Results: Maduro Wins By 200,000 Votes

UPDATE: Nicolas Maduro claims victory 

The president of Venezuela's National Electoral Council, Tibisay Lucena, congratulated the Venezuelan people for "a pacific electoral process," in which an estimated 78.1% of eligible voters participated to "decide the destiny of the country in peace and through the democratic process." Here are the official results:

Nicolas Maduro: 7.505.338 votes (50.66%)

Henrique Capriles: 7.271.403 (49.07%)

Lucena said added that these results are "irreversible" but stopped short of naming Maduro as the next president of Venezuela. The difference between candidates is just of approximately 200,000 votes. 

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Venezuela 2013 President Results: Rumors Mount as CNE Delays Results

As Venezuelans await the official results of the OPEC country's presidential election, between Chavista Nicolas Maduro and opponent Henrique Capriles Radonski, rumors mount of Facebook, Twitter and other social networks. Since the results are already taking longer than the ones from the October 2012 election (when the official results were unveiled around 10:30 p.m. [EDT]), supporters of both Capriles and Maduro remain optimistic that their candidates will be victorious. However, both Comandos (campaigns) continue to wait for the official results from the CNE.   

Venezuela Presidential Election 2013 Results: Capriles and Maduro Supporters Are Optimistic

As Venezuelans, and the world, await the official results from the 2013 Venezuelan presidential elections, both Comandos (campaigns) remain optimistic about their respective candidate's chances to become the next president of Venezuela. Chavista Nicolas Maduro, whose Twitter account the Venezuelan government says was hacked by foreign trolls, has been the long-favored because of support from lovers of the late socialist leader Hugo Chavez — who died from cancer in March, after being elected for a third six-year term last October. However, recent gaffes from Chavez's successor seemed to have fueled a late surge by Capriles who remains optimistic through his Facebook and Twitter accounts. Officials results are expected any minute.   

Hugo Chavez Venezuela: Hand-Picked Nicolas Maduro to Become Successor

Hugo Chavez's hand-picked successor Nicolas Maduro is likely to become the next president on Venezuela, barring a surprising turn of events, and the final vote tally will be handed down any moment.

Maduro campaigned as Chavez's disciple, calling himself the "son" of the president in campaign speeches. Chavez publicly endorsed Maduro in a final speech delivered back in December, before he underwent cancer treatment in Cuba. Maduro was loyal to Chavez and has adopted a very similar style as his political mentor.

Right before he cast his ballot, Maduro dedicated it to Chavez, saying, "The last 21 years of my life have revolved around the dreams of a man, of a giant. I never thought I'd be here. But here I am ... And I'm going to be president of the republic for the next six years."

Stay tuned for the live results.

Venezuela Election Winner: Nicholas Maduro Stole the Election, Says Challenger

As Venezuelans await the final vote tally in the first presidential election following the death of Hugo Chavez, opposition candidate Henrique Capriles is already alleging irregularities in the vote totals.

According to Maduro, the government was sending text messages to public employees and other citizens urging them to vote for Chavez' hand-picked successor Nicolas Maduro.

"We alert the country and the world of the intention to try and change the will expressed by the people," Capriles said in a Twitter message.

"The candidate of the government uses the presidential plane, all the military, all the ministries," he said.

There were reports of violence near two voting centers in Caracas. Approximately 170 international election observers are on hand to monitor the vote, though many observers are concerned that if the election is close, there could be unrest in the country.

Venezuela Election Results: Henrique Capriles Expected to Lose

Venezuelans continue to await the results of the 2013 presidential election, with the final vote tally scheduled to come down any moment.

Polls closed at 6:00 PM local time, though some polling stations remained open until everyone had a chance to vote.

The favorite, of course, is Hugo Chavez's hand-picked successor Nicolas Maduro. His challenger is Henrique Capriles, who is running on a campaign of change, but will not be able to defeat the Chavez-machine.

After casting his own ballot on Sunday, Capriles called for a "true democracy" and said he wants a "democracy for all, a country where we can all exercise our rights without the possibility of any reprisal."

Stay tuned for final vote tally to come soon.

Who Won the Venezuelan Election

Venezuela's National Electoral Council (CNE) will issue the presidential results 2013 at 10:30 p.m. (EDT), according to Globovision. Venezuelans went to the polls Sunday to elect a new president after the passing in March of the late socialist leader Hugo Chavez. An estimated 19 million voters chose between Interim President Nicolas Maduro — Chavez's successor — and Henrique Capriles, the popular governor from the opposition that after losing to Chavez on October 2012 is trying again Sunday as the challenger of Chavista Maduro. The results will be unveiled at any moment.  

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Venezuela Election 2013 Protests: Thousands Rally Against Chavez's Heir Maduro

UPDATE:

Thousands of supporters of Venezuelan opposition candidate Henrique Capriles took to the streets of Caracas and other cities banging pots, burning trash bags and chanting in protest for what their candidate sees as "fraudulent results" of the OPEC country's Sunday election to elect a successor to the late socialist leader Hugo Chavez. 

From Yahoo Australia:

Monday's demonstration erupted as the National Electoral Council (CNE) certified the victory of acting President Nicolas Maduro against opposition leader Henrique Capriles, who refused to concede defeat and demanded a full recount.


 

Previous Coverage:

On Sunday, an estimated 19 million Venezuelans, still stunned by the untimely death of their larger-than life socialist leader Hugo Chavez, will go to the polls to decide between Interim President Nicolas Maduro — Chavez's successor — and Henrique Capriles Radonski, a popular governor from the opposition who in October 2012 lost to Chavez by ten points.

Though Maduro, a former bus driver who ascended the ranks of the Bolivarian Revolution to become Chavez's vice president, has been the long-favored, a series of recent missteps on the campaign trail — he accused the United States of giving Chavez cancer, claimed the recently-deceased leader "appeared" to him as a bird, and invoked a curse on opposition voters — seemed to have fueled a late surge by Capriles, who's closed the gap albeit narrowly (local pollster Datanalisis, cited by the Associated Press, puts Maduro at 55% and Capriles at 45%.

However, the charismatic opponent, known as el flaco ("the skinny"), among its supporters, seems emboldened by a sudden courage that however lacked back when he campaigned against the late Comandante. Capriles, imprisoned in 2002 for supposedly plotting against the Cuban embassy in Caracas, has been cruising the country rightfully denouncing the 20% inflation rate and the continent's highest crime rate that 14 years of Chavismo left as a legacy.   

But Capriles' hill is steep, as Maduro, that despite lacking Chavez's charisma, counts with the Revolución's monstrous infrastructure to mobilize millions of red-clad supporters of Chavismo.  

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