Seven people have been killed and 61 injured in protests following Venezuela’s presidential elections in which the opposition candidate is demanding a recount.
The country’s chief prosecutor Luisa Ortega said the seven killed were members of the working class, a suggestion that the opposition might be to blame.
Mr Chavez’s chosen successor Nicolas Maduro was certified the winner of a presidential election on Monday amid questions about his ability to lead after squandering a double-digit lead in the race despite an outpouring of sympathy for his party following Mr Chavez’s death.
But protests across the country are posing a challenge even before he deals with Venezuela’s mounting problems.
The opposition leader Henrique Capriles is demanding a recount of Sunday’s election that he narrowly lost. As the National Electoral Council proclaimed Mr Maduro the victor, people stood on their balconies in Caracas apartment buildings banging pots and pans in protest. Across town, thousands of students briefly clashed with the National Guard which fired tear gas and plastic bullets. Protests continued today in the centre of Caracas.