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Montevideo, December 8th 2022 - 06:39 UTC



Venezuela Conflict

Friday, December 6th 2002 - 20:00 UTC
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Lawmakers from the pro-government socialist Podemos (We Can) Party on Thursday asked Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez to lead a call to early elections as a way to solve the country's growing social and political crisis.

Legislators Guillermo Palacios, Luis Salas, Dennis Pereza and Rafael Simon Jimenez, the vice president of the National Assembly, issued a statement proposing that Chavez "take the initiative to announce to the country an electoral solution within the framework of the current Constitution." The lawmakers suggested Chavez promote "a constitutional amendment, resulting from ample consultations with all the sectors," which would allow moving up the general elections scheduled for 2006.

Jimenez told reporters the early elections would mean "a point of flexibility, rapprochement and consensus" in the negotiations between the government and the opposition alliance known as the Democratic Coordinator, now staging a four-day old nationwide strike to pressure Chavez to hold a referendum on his remaining in power.

"We believe that in light of the determination of the stances taken - the opposition with the non-binding referendum and the government with the recall referendum - the most feasible is the concept of an amendment that paves the way for early elections," he said.

Cesar Gaviria, head of the Organization of American States (OAS), has been mediating negotiations between the government and the opposition to find a peaceful solution to the country's crisis since Nov. 8 with no definitive results.

The national crisis escalated this week with the initiation on Monday of the ongoing general strike organized by the Democratic Coordinator to oust Chavez from office.

Categories: Mercosur.

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