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article imageVenezuelans get ready to protest in Canada's Capital Special

By Laura Garzón     Apr 17, 2013 in World
Ottawa - Venezuelans in Canada are getting ready to support their political leaders today, in a protest that will take place in front of the Venezuelan embassy in Ottawa.
According to one of the organizers of the event, Miriam Mendez, a group of followers of the elected president Maduro, will gather at 4 p.m. to protest against a possible coup d´état, against the elected government. In a phone interview, Mendez said, another group of Venezuelans from Gatineau, QC., will join the protest. However, this group is in support of Capriles.
It is important to remember that Venezuelans all over the world have been waiting for a recount of votes that Capriles asked for after Maduro was named president Sunday night. The new leader of the country said “let them open the boxes”, accepting the audit. Yet, nothing has happened yet.
Early this morning, during a Wednesday press conference, the president of Venezuela´s Supreme court, Luisa Estela Morales said the manual counting of votes does not exist in the South American country. Morales said that if people are uncomfortable with the count they can sign an official petition, a democratic tool that Henrique Capriles has not used yet, reported the newspaper, El Colombiano,
The electoral system in Venezuela is electronic. However, a paper receipt is issued for every vote cast, which technically means that a manual recount is possible, reported the U.S.news
Venezuelan lawyer, Carol Mac-Lellan explained on a phone interview, that “according to the Venezuelan constitution, and to the Organic Law on the electoral branch, Venezuelans, have the right to ask the National Electoral Council for the recounting of votes“.
Article 350 of the Venezuelan constitution says Venezuelans have the right to “reject a regimen, legislation or authority that goes against the values, principles and democratic guarantees or harms human rights”. According to Mac-Lellan, Venezuelans can use this article to demand an investigation of electoral fraud which includes voter intimidation, vote buying, and miss-recording of votes.
On Tuesday, Henrique Capriles canceled the protest programmed today in Caracas to demand the National Electoral Council call for a recounting of votes. The decision was taken after violent protests led to the death of seven people and left 61 injured.
Capriles said "This claim is peaceful and if someone departs from this peaceful theme, he is not with me. Even more he is doing damage to me," reported the Voice of America.
In an interview with CNN, Capriles said, he has never asked his followers to be violent. "I am a follower of Gandhi, I am a follower of Mandela, I am a pacifist”, he said.
Elected president, Nicolás Maduro said on an interview yesterday that he will not recognize the Venezuelan states governors who do not recognize him as the new leader of the country.
More about Venezuelan elections, Venezuelan president, Canada, Ottawa
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