May 21, 2018 16:59 IST

Nicolas Maduro re-elected as Venezuelan President

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Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro has won the election, claiming a second six-year term, in a vote marred by an opposition boycott and alleged foul play, media reported on Monday. With more than 90 per cent of the votes counted on Sunday, 55-year-old Maduro had 67.7 per cent, 5.8 million votes, the BBC reported quoting National Electoral Council chief Tibisay Lucena as saying. The main opposition candidate, Henri Falcon won 21.2 per cent, 1.8 million votes, she said. Falcon rejected the result soon after the polls closed, saying, "We do not recognise this electoral process as valid. We have to have new elections in Venezuela." The early reports said turnout for the controversial vote was unusually low, about 46 per cent of the electorate. Falcon had earlier alleged that the vote had been rigged in Maduro's favour, by abuse of the scanning of state-issued benefits card, used for accessing food. Government officials said the polls were "free and fair" but most of the opposition had joined a boycott. The elections were supposed to be held in December 2018, but the National Constituent Assembly, made up exclusively of Maduro's supporters, brought them forward. Credit: Reuters
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Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro stands with supporters during a gathering after the results of the election were released, outside of the Miraflores Palace in Caracas, Venezuela, May 20, 2018. Credit: Reuters
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Supporters wear mustaches depicting Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro while he speaks during a gathering after the results of the election were released, outside of the Miraflores Palace in Caracas, Venezuela, May 20, 2018. Credit: Reuters
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A young supporter wears a mustache depicting Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro while he speaks during a gathering after the results of the election were released, outside of the Miraflores Palace in Caracas, Venezuela, May 20, 2018. Credit: Reuters
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An image depicting Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro's mustache is held up while he speaks during a gathering after the results of the election were released, outside of the Miraflores Palace in Caracas, Venezuela, May 20, 2018. Credit: Reuters
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Soldiers look on as supporters of Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro celebrate the results of the election, outside of Miraflores Palace in Caracas, Venezuela, May 20, 2018. Credit: Reuters
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Female supporters wear mustaches depicting Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro while he speaks during a gathering after the results of the election were released, outside of the Miraflores Palace in Caracas, Venezuela, May 20, 2018. Credit: Reuters