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In Venezuela, the elected governors of the opposition refuse to take the oath

The controversial victory of the Chavistas candidates in the regional elections of 15 October revives the Venezuelan crisis.

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In Venezuela, the elected governors of the opposition refuse to take the oath
The Venezuelan opposition announced on Wednesday, 18 October, that its candidates elected to post of Governor in five states of country on Sunday refused to take an oath before Constituent Assembly, an organ which it considers to be contrary to Constitution. This decision should lead to ir dismissal and revive political crisis in country.

Composed solely of supporters of former President Hugo Chavez (1999-2013), constituent, which is not recognized by international community, has assumed full power over all institutions, including controlled parliament By opponents.

Shortly before start of special swearing-in session, which was scheduled for mid-day, Table for Democratic Unity (MUD), a coalition that brings toger opposition to President Nicolas Maduro, announced in a communiqué that five elected "Will swear before God and legislative councils, not before fraudulent Constituent Assembly".

According to National Electoral Council (CNE), Chavistas candidates took it on Sunday in 18 out of 23 states. The opponents hoped that ir majority in opinion would be confirmed in ballot boxes.

"The governors must not be invested by Constituent Assembly, designated fraudulently," said opposition member Henry Ramos Allup. The leader of Democratic Social Democratic Party wants to calm game while waiting for a regional election audit. In his view, transfer of voters from ir usual polling stations to anor, at last hour and without having informed m, caused a strong abstention at expense of opponents.

"They were shot"

In state of Miranda (periphery of Caracas), 225 000 transfers resulted in 136 000 abstentions. Result: Candidate Chaviste beat opponent by 75 000 votes. The opposition candidate, Carlos Ocariz, mayor of popular Sugar district, also denounces purchase of votes, obstructing election observers and aggressions of "collectives", Chavistas paramilitary groups, against buses chartered by The opposition. "At Guarenas, y were shot, indignant." How to recognize results with so many irregularities? »

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All losing candidates do not adopt same attitude. Thus, opponent Henri Falcon, a former chaviste, admitted his defeat in state of Lara despite irregularities committed. On or hand, in state of Bolivar, Andrés Velasquez does not recognise advantage of his opponent, from just 1 471 votes (0.26%). He was victim of anor violation by CNE: refusal to withdraw from ballots names of candidates eliminated during opposition primary, on 10 September. Subject to confusion, 3 787 voters of Bolivar saw ir vote cancelled because y voted for Francisco Sucre, who had withdrew for Andrés Velasquez.

The vote Relaunchs divisions within opposition. Those who had advocated boycott were comforted. "There will be no electoral issue in Venezuela until re is a change to CNE," said former MP Maria Corina Machado. The MUD "is poorly managed", on or hand, Antonio Ledezma, a former metropolitan mayor of Caracas, placed under house arrest.

The question is likely to rest in short term, during municipal elections, waiting for presidential 2018. However, challenge of results is not limited to Venezuelan opponents. Canada and eleven Latin American countries have criticized " various obstacles, acts of intimidation, manipulation and irregularities" of regions. This group of countries urgently requests an "independent audit accompanied by specialized and recognized international observers, with a view to elucidating controversy raised by results of elections".

"No excuse for world"

Caracas has reacted strongly. Mr. Maduro recalled Venezuelan ambassador to Canada. "What do I care if stupid government of Canada does not recognize our elections?" he said at a press conference. To believe, ballot was a "strong message" sent by Venezuelans "to imperialism, to Trump, to its regional allies and to local right".

Venezuela was on agenda of Ministers for Foreign Affairs of European Union meeting on Monday in Luxembourg. The possibility of EU sanctions is on table. "We need a return to rule of law" in Venezuela, said French minister Jean-Yves le Drian. Paris supports idea of international mediation.

The head of Venezuelan diplomacy, Jorge Arreaza, convened on Tuesday ambassadors accredited to Caracas. "There is no excuse in world to challenge results of any election held by electoral power," he warned. To hear, those who dispute want "of dead and blood in Venezuela".

Elections in Venezuela: Paris evokes "serious irregularities"

France announced, on Monday 16 October, its "concern" after announcement of results of regional elections in Venezuela, won by camp of President Nicolas Maduro, pointing out that "serious irregularities" had been denounced by The opposition.

The conditions of organization of elections are disputed. Serious irregularities are denounced and lack of transparency in verification and compilation process affects confidence in results, said spokesman of Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Agnès Romatet-Spain. No international observer had been accepted by authorities for Sunday vote.

"France deplores this situation and is working with its partners in European Union to examine appropriate measures to contribute to a solution to serious crisis that is going on across country," she added.

The Venezuelan Electoral Council announced that President Nicolas Maduro's camp had largely won Sunday regional elections, but opposition refused to acknowledge this result, which it felt was tainted by fraud, and called for an audit of Returning.

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