Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 18 September 2014

Seven die in Venezuela's post-election protests

Venezuela's newly elected president Nicolas Maduro celebrates his victory after official results are announced (AP/Ramon Espinosa)
Venezuela's newly elected president Nicolas Maduro celebrates his victory after official results are announced (AP/Ramon Espinosa)
Opposition presidential candidate Henrique Capriles kisses his identification card as he holds up his inked finger after voting (AP/Fernando Llano)
Opposition presidential candidate Henrique Capriles kisses his identification card as he holds up his inked finger after voting (AP/Fernando Llano)
Opposition supporters react as they hear the official presidential elections results in Caracas, Venezuela (AP/Fernando Llano)
Opposition supporters react as they hear the official presidential elections results in Caracas, Venezuela (AP/Fernando Llano)

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.

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