Former Uruguayan Vicepresident Raúl Sendic Rodríguez was handed down an 18-month suspended jail sentence Thursday for abuse of office and embezzlement.
On Sunday 27 October the Uruguayan electorate will be voting for a new president (there is no immediate reelection) and a renewed Legislative, 30 Senators and 99 Lower House members. Uruguay is one of the more stable countries in the region, both it's solid institutions as well as its citizens who are deeply committed to democracy, social rights and a strong presence of government in the economy.
Uruguay has a new vice-president following the resignation of the questioned and discredited Raul Sendic. On Wednesday mid-morning, Lucia Topolansky, wife of ex president Jose Mujica received unanimous support from the General Assembly (123/123). Under the Uruguayan constitution the head of the most voted Senate group of the winning party in the last election, in this case the MPP (Popular Participation Movement), leads in the presidential succession line. She is the first woman to occupy such a post.
Uruguayan Vice president, and head of the Senate, Raul Sendic has stepped down after presenting his “indeclinable” resignation to the ruling coalition plenary and to president Tabare Vazquez, quelling what was becoming a major political and institutional situation given his long string of misconducts, some of them precisely questioned by an ethics tribunal from the coalition.
The European Union also has difficulties in completing a draft proposal of goods and services to exchange with Mercosur in the search for a long delayed trade agreement between the two blocks, revealed Uruguayan vice-president Raul Sendic during a report to the Senate on his recent 10/11 June trip to Brussels for the Celac/EU summit. However in the third quarter of the year there should be positive news.
Uruguay's vice-president Raúl Sendic and Foreign minister Rodolfo Nin Novoa will be attending this week's summit of EU and Celac leaders scheduled in Brussels, which will also address in the sidelines, current EU/Mercosur negotiations for a wide ranging trade agreement.
Fresh from an incident with Venezuela which delayed and displaced a Unasur meeting, the Uruguayan government is looking for closer relations with the conservative administration of Paraguay, putting the emphasis on regional integration but also in making Mercosur a more open and dynamic trade and cooperation block.
Tabare Vazquez was sworn in as president of Uruguay Sunday, returning to office a decade after first leading the centre left catch-all coalition to power and drawing a curtain on folksy farmer Jose Mujica's colorful rule. Vazquez, a cancer doctor with a more buttoned-down style than the outspoken Mujica, won 53.6% of the vote in a November 30 presidential run-off, reclaiming the office he previously held from 2005 to 2010.
An hour after voting booths were closed on Sunday, and when exit polls confirmed former Uruguayan president Tabare Vazquez had been elected by a wide margin as the next leader of the country, Luis Lacalle Pou rang the winner to congratulate him and wish him the best for the country.
On Sunday Uruguayan voters will confirm in a runoff the country's next president, which according to all forecasts will be Tabare Vazquez. An oncologist by training, former president (2005/2009) and former mayor of the City of Montevideo, Vazquez and the Broad Front coalition was just less than three percentage points short of the needed 50% in the first round on October 26.