November 23, 2017

Consultation draws out crowd in Argentina and around world

Friday, July 21, 2017

Venezuelans in Buenos Aires turn out in their thousands for opposition-sponsored ‘plebiscite’

Venezuelans living in Argentina line up to cast their votes outside the polling station during an unofficial plebiscite against President Nicolas Maduro’s government in Buenos Aires, Argentina, July 16, 2017.

The public consultation proposed by the Venezuelan opposition held last week drew out crowds of their countrymen across the world, with the community in Buenos Aires also turning out in vast numbers to express their disapproval of Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro’s plans to install a Constituent Assembly.

“According to information provided by immigration, in Argentina there are about 35,000 Venezuelans who are residents, but what we don’t know is how many of them are over 18, which is the requirement for participating in the plebiscite” Andrés Goldenberg, the Democratic Unity Roundtable (MUD) representative for Argentina, said to the Télam new agency.

No less than 18 voting centres were set up across Argentina, of which five were in Buenos Aires City and at one of the centres upwards of 6,500 voted. Upper estimates placed the total number of voters in Argentina at more than 20,000.

The consultation, advanced by the opposition and without the formal recognition of the National Electoral Council, asked voters to respond yes or no if they rejected the holding of a Constituent Assembly without the prior approval of the Venezuelan people, if they demanded that military and public officials defend the 1999 Constitution and support the decisions of the National Assembly, and lastly if they approved of the renewal of the authorities as established in the Constitution and the holding of the elections and a national unity government to restore order.

According to a commission of guarantors, some 7.53 million people voted in the consultation, with 683,789 voting abroad. 98.4 percent voted “Yes” to all three question and 0.13 percent voted “No” to all three questions. The remainder either mixed their responses or cast spoiled or blank ballots.

Venezuela is currently gripped by an economic and political crisis and more than 100 days of protests that have left nearly 100 people dead.

Voters were also recorded in other Latin American countries, the United States and Europe.

— Herald with Télam

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