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Maduro is sworning as President while ‘CNE’ recounts votes?

This is news updated

Nicolas Maduro will be sworn in as Venezuela’s president on Friday at a ceremony attended by several Latin American leaders, after a decision to widen an electronic audit of the vote took some of the heat out of a dispute over his election.

Maduro, a former bus driver-turned-foreign minister who became the late Hugo Chavez’s chosen successor, narrowly beat opposition challenger Henrique Capriles in Sunday’s vote.

He accused Capriles of triggering post-election violence that killed eight people, though the opposition says Maduro allies staged some incidents to distract from the vote dispute.

“We have stopped a coup in its first stage. They are beaten, but they are coming back with a new attack,” Maduro said on Thursday before flying to Peru for a last-minute meeting of South American leaders to discuss the situation.

While he was in Lima, Venezuela’s electoral authority said it would widen to 100 percent an audit of electronic votes from a previous audit that reviewed 54 percent.

“We do this in order to preserve a climate of harmony … and isolate violent sectors that are seeking to injure democracy,” Tibisay Lucena, president of the National Electoral Council (CNE), said in a televised speech to the nation…




Venezuela troubles after the presidential election…

Venezuela’s opposition leaders said on Wednesday they feared persecution over post-election protests, but President-elect Nicolas Maduro promised to protect his rival despite their vicious election dispute.

Maduro’s razor-thin victory in a presidential vote has not been recognized by Henrique Capriles, who is demanding a recount and alleging thousands of irregularities at poll stations.

Seven people have died in opposition-led protests, and the government has vowed legal action against Capriles and others whom they accuse of stirring up violence.

Instability in the OPEC nation with the world’s largest oil reserves has sent Venezuelan bond prices tumbling.

The unrest, just weeks after the death of former socialist leader Hugo Chavez, has laid bare the deep polarization of a nation split down the middle between pro- and anti-government factions, and left its 29 million people on edge.

Overnight, Capriles alleged that the government had ordered gangs to attack his supporters and even his official residence in Miranda state, where he is the governor.

“Anything that happens to me in the official residence at Los Teques is responsibility of Nicolas Maduro!” he said.

Though demanding legal action against Capriles and calling him a fascist, Maduro nevertheless said he would be protected.

“I am a man of peace and of my word. I ordered (state intelligence agency) Sebin to maintain protection of the ex-candidate of the right wing even though he has got rid of those who were protecting him,” he said via Twitter.

Another prominent opposition leader, Leopoldo Lopez, said there was a plan to arrest him on charges of destabilization. Officials did not immediately respond to that…

Source: Reuters

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