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Venezuela's Maduro Receives New International Support

Mérida, 17th April 2013 (Venezuelanalysis.com) – As the Venezuelan opposition continues to reject Sunday's election results, President Nicolas Maduro has received support from across the region.

In a meeting of the Organisation of American States, (OAS), members of the regional trade bloc Mercosur endorsed a statement congratulating Maduro on his electoral win.

Representatives from Colombia, Brazil and the Dominican Republic also congratulated Maduro, while the Argentinian representative reaffirmed that his nation's observers recognised the elections as successful.

Fifteen heads of state have also confirmed they will attend the swearing in of Nicolas Maduro on Friday.

According to the Venezuelan minister of communication and information Ernesto Villegas, delegations have already been confirmed from Argentina, Bolivia, Nicaragua, Uruguay, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Dominica, Ecuador, Haiti, Dominican Republic, Honduras, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, China and the Palestinian Authority.

US Backs Opposition Demands

The United States, however, has yet to acknowledge the electoral results. On Tuesday, State Department spokesman Patrick Ventrell told Associated Press that Washington will continue to support opposition calls for a total recount.

“Under the Venezuelan constitution, it’s ultimately up to the CNE [National Electoral Council] to certify [results].”

After stating that the results had been certified by the CNE, the reporter asked, “Are you prepared to congratulate Mr. Maduro on his victory?”

“We’re not there,” Ventrell responded.

Speaking to media on Tuesday, Bolivian President Evo Morales described comments from the State Department as “flagrant US interference in Venezuela’s democracy...”

“Neither that spokesperson nor the US government has moral authority to question electoral results in any Latin American country or around the world,” he said.

Argentinean President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner has also criticised the State Department.

“I dare ask, with much humility, [that] the government of the United States...recognise the Venezuelan government after transparent and fair elections.”

Calling for “dialogue and respect for the constitutional order”, a spokesperson for the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs has today announced the Hollande administration's recognition of the results, describing the CNE as “the competent authority in the matter”.

France is the third European nation to recognise Maduro's victory.

International Solidarity

Solidarity groups have also expressed support for Maduro's presidency, with rallies taking place in countries including Argentina, Canada and Australia.

The Assistant Chief of Staff of Europe's largest trade union, Unite the Union's Adrian Weir has stated that, “the ballot was free and fair.”

“The count was equally transparent and signed off by party witnesses including those of the Capriles’ coalition, the MUD. I’ve witnessed a robust system,” he said.

In a statement released today, the Australia Venezuela Solidarity Network has likewise called for the results to be “respected”, and urged the “Australian government to come out immediately and recognise the election of Maduro as the president of choice of the Venezuelan people.”

In the United Kingdom, Venezuela Solidarity Campaign’s Francisco Dominguez has said,

“Once again, Venezuela has shown to the world that it has a vibrant and healthy democracy where both sides can air their views.”

“When the results go the opposition’s way, they quickly accept them, as Capriles did when he was elected as a state governor just last December. But when they lose they often reject them.”

“Capriles and his allies should respect the will of the people.” 

Published on Apr 17th 2013 at 5.47pm