Venezuela Elections Neither ‘Free Nor Fair’, Says US

The US has castigated last weekend’s election in Venezuela that saw state governors being chosen, dubbing it as “neither free nor fair.” A delegate from the State Department revealed there was evidence showing that the ballot papers had been tampered with, with some stations moved without public notice.
Candidates aligned to President Maduro won 17 out of 23 state govern-ships, but opposition chiefs claimed there was fraud in the proceedings. The opposition Democratic Union Roundtable collective is yet to accept the result.
State Department representative Heather Nauert was quoted saying the voice of the Venezuelan natives was not heard. She says there were last minute alterations to voting locations without public notice; manipulation of ballot papers; and prejudiced positioning of voting machinery in coalition neighborhoods against opposition zones. She also noted how the event lacked independent, credible international observers.
Conflict with Washington
The Venezuelan opposition was bound to dispute the election that handed President Maduro’s supporters a huge margin of victory. They now seem to have received substantial support from the Trump administration. With the US having already enacted sanctions against the Venezuelan regime, political analysts are saying more stern decrees/measures could follow. The approach will however not likely surprise President Maduro, who for a long time has been thriving off the wrangle with Washington and the EU.
Reference
http://www.bbc.com/news/world-latin-america-41646488

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