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Venezuela’s electoral council refuses call for full recount

Venezuela President Nicolas Maduro being attended to.

Venezuela President Nicolas Maduro being attended to.

CARACAS — Venezuela’s electoral council has amended the final result of the April 14 presidential election after finishing counting votes cast abroad.

The council said that according to its latest figures, Nicolas Maduro won the election by 1.49 percentage points, or fewer than 225,000 votes.

Earlier official figures had suggested Maduro won by 1.8 percentage points.

Opposition candidate Henrique Capriles has demanded a full recount, which the council has rejected.

Figures released by the National Electoral Council yesterday revealed that Capriles had won 93.13 per cent of the votes cast abroad.

With 99.79 per cent of the votes counted, the margin between the two candidates had narrowed to 1.49 percentage points, it said.

Maduro the winner

The CNE declared Maduro the winner on April 15, after he had gained what it called an “irreversible majority”. He was sworn in on 19 April.

Capriles has demanded a vote-by-vote recount, but the CNE said it would be legally impossible to carry out.

It has, however, agreed to carry out a partial audit, which is expected to take until June. During the audit, 56 per cent of the votes cast will be examined.

The CNE says the remaining 44 per cent had been checked immediately after the election.

Yesterday, Capriles said Maduro had “illegitimately stolen the presidency”. He has until May 6 to lodge his request with the Supreme Court contesting the election result. (BBC)

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