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Opposition parties to boycott Venezuelan elections

More than 25 opposition parties in Venezuela have vowed not to take part in parliamentary elections in December.

Rio de Janeiro, 3 August 2020 (dpa/MIA) – More than 25 opposition parties in Venezuela have vowed not to take part in parliamentary elections in December.

“Twenty-seven democratic political organizations have signed a declaration in which we express to the Venezuelan people and the international community that we have unanimously decided not to participate in the fraud the dictatorship has called for,” according to a statement issued by the “Voluntad Popular” party of opposition leader Juan Guaido and others and published on Twitter on Sunday.

The National Electoral Council (CNE,) which has close ties to Venezuela’s President Nicolas Maduro, announced last month that parliamentary elections will be held on December 6.

Guaido has slammed the upcoming vote as a “farce.”

Maduro won a second term in May 2018 in an election boycotted by most of the opposition. He has presided over a massive economic and political crisis that has sent about 5 million Venezuelans fleeing abroad.

Guaido was elected parliament speaker in January 2019 and was subsequently recognized by about 50 countries as Venezuela’s interim president.

But he has failed to oust military-backed Maduro and last January government ally Luis Parra was elected president of parliament in an official but disputed vote, while opposition lawmakers elected Guaido.

The Supreme Court recently confirmed Parra’s post and replaced leaders of two opposition parties as well as restructuring the country’s electoral council. The replacements brought in people closer to the government ahead of the elections.

The opposition runs the risk of losing its last bastion in the election. With the boycott of the polls, Guaido risks losing his legitimacy.

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