April 14, 2013 |
Venezuela's interim president, Nicolas Maduro, squares off Sunday with Miranda state Gov. Henrique Capriles in an election that will decide who will complete the term of Hugo Chavez, who died March 5 after designating Maduro as his political heir. Voters will be influenced by how they fared under Chavez's Bolivarian Revolution, which reduced poverty but also brought rampant inflation, soaring crime and food shortages. Here is a snapshot of Venezuala after 14 years of Chavismo. Economy: Pressing issues include a 20% inflation rate, a ballooning government deficit and a dearth of investment.
April 13, 2013 |
CARACAS, Venezuela - When state Gov. Henrique Capriles ran unsuccessfully for president in October against longtime incumbent Hugo Chavez, he largely ignored a series of smears alleging that he was a Nazi or sexual pervert, saying he wouldn't lower himself to responding to such insults. But in the current campaign to fill out the six-year term of Chavez, who died of cancer last month, he is no longer a milquetoast. During the short but intense campaign, he has repeatedly labeled opponent Nicolas Maduro, who is Chavez's political heir, a liar, incompetent and corrupt.
April 12, 2013 |
CARACAS, Venezuela - Venezuelan interim President Nicolas Maduro has accused his political rivals of bringing Colombian paramilitaries into the country to commit assassinations, an assertion typical of the brief but intense campaign leading to Sunday's presidential election. Maduro, in a speech broadcast Thursday night on state-run television, said suspected paramilitaries had been detained in a series of raids. On Friday, Vice President Jorge Arreaza said authorities, taking steps to prevent attempts to destabilize the country, had arrested two Colombians dressed in Venezuelan military outfits and seized equipment used with high-caliber military rifles.
April 12, 2013 |
CARACAS , Venezuela -- Venezuela's interim president, Nicolas Maduro, is accusing his political rivals of bringing Colombian paramilitaries into the country to commit assassinations, a dramatic assertion that was typical of the brief but intense campaign leading to Sunday's election. Nearly 19 million Venezuelans are eligible to vote in Sunday's poll, in which Maduro will square off against Miranda state Gov. Henrique Capriles. The winner will serve out the term of Hugo Chavez , who died March 5 after designating Maduro his political heir.
April 11, 2013 |
Deep into Marie Arana's wonderful new biography of Simón Bolívar, "the George Washington of South America," there's a deliciously unexpected pause in the action. It's 1816, and Bolívar has set sail from Haiti. He's on his way back to Venezuela, with an army set to take on the hated Spanish colonial authorities. At the island of St. Thomas, he ostensibly stops for "supplies. " In reality, his fleet of ships has anchored so that Bolívar can pick up his mistress, Pepita Machado.
April 5, 2013 |
The campaign to succeed the late Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez is underway, and as with past campaigns in that country, passions are running high. Vice President Nicolas Maduro and opposition candidate Henrique Capriles exchange near-daily attacks, each accusing the other of everything from plotting murder to planning coups. But unlike in previous elections, the National Election Council has not invited international monitors to observe the April 14 vote. Instead, it has asked a handful of individuals and the Union of South American Nations to "accompany" the process - a far more limited role that does not provide them full and free access to polling places and does not allow them to make public statements questioning or criticizing the process.
April 1, 2013 |
CARACAS, Venezuela - Interim President Nicolas Maduro on Monday raised the curtain on Venezuela's abbreviated campaign to elect a successor to Hugo Chavez, lavishly praising the late leader during a televised address but promising to tackle escalating crime, perhaps Chavez's darkest legacy. The 50-year-old Maduro, a former bus driver and socialist union leader, is heavily favored to beat his challenger, Gov. Henrique Capriles of Miranda state, in the April 14 election to fill out Chavez's six-year term.
March 20, 2013 |
Hugo Chavez is already having a very busy afterlife. The charismatic and controversial president of Venezuela died March 5. Not long afterward, one joke goes, he showed up in heaven and persuaded St. Peter to choose a Latin American as the next pope. But St. Peter is worried now because there are elections in heaven soon, and Chavez is buying off the angels with heavenly currency and barrels of free Venezuelan oil. Back down on Earth, Chavez is busy, too. Over at the 9th annual Venezuela International Book Fair this week (FILVEN)
March 16, 2013 |
Last week, Venezuela's government announced that President Hugo Chavez's body would be re-embalmed and placed under glass for eternal viewing. But this week, the idea was abandoned after interim President Nicolas Maduro said Russian and German experts had advised him against the idea because too much time had passed to properly preserve the late president's corpse. Chavez died this month after battling cancer. So in other words, poor planning appears to have derailed the government's effort to preserve the president's body for future generations to view and draw inspiration from.
March 11, 2013 |
CARACAS, Venezuela - Opposition leader Henrique Capriles agreed Sunday to run against interim President Nicolas Maduro in an election to determine Hugo Chavez's successor, but accused the government of "shameful" and unconstitutional maneuvers to undercut his chances. Capriles, 40, ran unsuccessfully against Chavez as the opposition's unity candidate in October, losing by 10 percentage points. He was reelected governor of Miranda state in December - the same month Chavez traveled to Cuba for his fourth cancer surgery in less than two years and anointed Maduro his political heir.