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Venezuela president alleges plot as opposition goes to court
Published on May 4, 2013 Email To Friend    Print Version

Nicolas Maduro (C) celebrates his victory in last month's presidential election in Venezuela

By Caribbean News Now contributor

CARACAS, Venezuela -- Recently elected Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro said on Friday that former president of Colombia, Alvaro Uribe, was plotting to kill him.

"Uribe is behind a plot to kill me," Maduro said on national television. "Uribe is a killer. I have enough evidence of who is conspiring, and there are sectors of the Venezuelan right that are involved."

He did not, however, provide details of the alleged conspiracy.

Former President Hugo Chavez frequently clashed with Uribe while the two were in office over issues ranging from border security to free trade agreements and military cooperation with the United States.

Like his predecessor, Maduro has frequently alleged assassination attempts but rarely presented proof or demonstrated who was responsible for them. Earlier this year accused the United States of seeking to kill opposition leader Henrique Capriles to stir chaos and spark a coup.

He later said he himself was the target of an assassination plot by mercenaries from El Salvador who had entered Venezuela.

Just hours before Chavez’s death in March after a two-year battle with cancer, Maduro alleged "imperialist" conspirators had infected the former president with the disease.

Meanwhile, the opposition campaign for Capriles on Thursday asked Venezuela's Supreme Court to overturn the April 14 vote that resulted in a narrow victory for Maduro.

Attorney Gerardo Fernandez told reporters, "The goal of this appeal is ... that the elections be repeated."

Maduro defeated Capriles by a margin of 272,000 votes, or 1.8 percent of the total, according to official results from the National Electoral Council (CNE).

However, Capriles said he would not accept the outcome without a full recount.

The Venezuelan electoral system relies on electronic voting backed up by paper ballots and the CNE automatically audits a random sample of 54 percent of the votes to detect discrepancies between the electronic tabulation and the paper records.

Four days after the voting, CNE agreed to audit the remaining 46 percent, but, after initially welcoming the plan, Capriles pronounced it unsatisfactory and moved ahead with the effort to overturn the election.
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