Published: Fri, January 11, 2019
Worldwide | By Isabel Fisher

Venezuela President Maduro sworn in for second term

Venezuela President Maduro sworn in for second term

"I swear on behalf of the people of Venezuela".

In a speech after his swearing-in, Maduro claimed 94 countries had sent representatives to his inauguration. A government has been truly elected by the people and for the people.

Article 231 of the Venezuelan Constitution allows the ceremony to take place in the Supreme Court if the head of state can not take the oath before the parliament.

The leader of Brazil's Workers' Party is under fire by some fellow leftists for attending the second-term inauguration of socialist Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro.

The opposition-led Congress opened its session for the year this week, led by 35-year-old Juan Guaido, who vowed to battle against Maduro.

But Maduro continues to enjoy consistent support from the armed forces, leaving him with few serious challenges at home despite the global outcry.

Thousands of spectators gathered for the ceremony in Caracas.

Maduro later took the salute from almost 5,000 troops at a colorful parade at the military academy with his Defense Minister Vladimir Padrino.

After donning the presidential sash - as well as a ceremonial gold chain bearing the key to the sarcophagus containing the remains of Venezuela's revolutionary leader Simon Bolivar - an ebullient Maduro turned to salute the crowd with a V-sign.


Supporters, many of whom were public servants identified by t-shirts of state agencies, rallied in the center of Caracas to celebrate the new term.

"It is time for Venezuelan leaders to make a choice", Pompeo said.

"Sometimes it's hard to find food because businesses hide it and then say it's the president's fault, even though we all know that's a lie", said Graciela Laya, 43, a homemaker, at a rally near the Supreme Court.

Last May, Maduro declared victory following an election that his political opponents and many foreign nations consider illegitimate because popular opponents were banned from running and the largest anti-government parties boycotted the race (See related story on Pages 6 & 7). He blames an "economic war" led by the United States and local opposition adversaries for the country's woes.

"Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro was being sworn in to a second term Thursday amid global calls for him to step down and a devastating economic crisis, but with some long-time friends in attendance both from overseas and at home", writes the Associated Press.

In a statement yesterday evening, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade Kamina Johnson Smith said: "The Government of Jamaica, in supporting the resolution, acknowledges that the fundamental values and principles, including the maintenance of the rule of law, respect for human rights, and democracy, as well as non-intervention in the internal affairs of states, remain pertinent considerations. like the several countries represented here".

Paraguayan President Mario Abdo said his country was shutting its embassy and pulling out all diplomatic personnel due to what it called a "rupture of constitutional order".

This only pushes further away the possibility of a constitutional negotiated solution while the political, economic and social situation in the country keeps getting worse and the impact of the crisis in the stability of the region is increasing.

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