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Venezuela

Maduro Claims Victory In Venezuela Vote, Opposition Demands Recount

EFE; BBC; FRANCE24 (France); EL UNIVERSAL, EL NACIONAL (Venezuela)

Worldcrunch

CARACAS - Hugo Chavez’s hand-picked successor Nicolas Maduro declared himself the narrow winner of Venezuela's highly anticipated presidential election, but his opponent has already demanded a recount.

The Spanish news agency EFE reported the final tallies were 50.66% for Maduro and 49.07% for rival candidate Henrique Capriles, according to Venezuela's national election commission.

After the results were announced late on Sunday night, Capriles declared that he will contest the result, demanding a recount, because there were too many irregularities during the process. “This result does not reflect the reality of what Venezuelans want and aspire to be. Mr Maduro, if you were illegitimate before, now you are more so.”

Henrique Capriles Radonski's Official Facebook Page

El Universal reports that Capriles said there were more than 300,000 votes that would need to be examined again, citing a list of 3,200 “incidents” that took place during the vote.

Capriles accused the government of pressuring civil servants into voting for Maduro, as well as letting people vote after the polling stations closed, writes France24.

Venezuela uses electronic voting machines that print out a paper ballot as a backup for any recounts. The BBC writes that the votes will be recounted by hand.

Maduro has accepted the call for a recount, saying that he has nothing to hide, reports EFE. “At least this way,” Maduro said, “we’ll win more votes”.

Nicolas Maduro Moros' Official Facebook Page

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Geopolitics

Utter Pessimism, What Israelis And Palestinians Share In Common

Right now, according to a joint survey of Israelis and Palestinians, hopes for a peaceful solution of coexistence simply don't exist. The recent spate of violence is confirmation of the deepest kind of pessimism on both sides for any solution other than domination of the other.

An old Palestinian protester waves Palestinian flag while he confronts the Israeli soldiers during the demonstration against Israeli settlements in the village of Beit Dajan near the West Bank city of Nablus.

A Palestinian protester confronts Israeli soldiers during the demonstration against Israeli settlements in the West Bank village of Beit Dajan on Jan. 6.

Pierre Haski

-Analysis-

PARIS — Just before the latest outbreak of violence between Israelis and Palestinians, a survey of public opinion among the two peoples provided a key to understanding the current situation unfolding before our eyes.

It was a joint study, entitled "Palestinian-Israeli Pulse", carried out by two research centers, one Israeli, the other Palestinian, which for years have been regularly asking the same questions to both sides.

The result is disastrous: not only is the support for the two-state solution — Israel and Palestine side by side — at its lowest point in two decades, but there is now a significant share of opinion on both sides that favors a "non-democratic" solution, i.e., a single state controlled by either the Israelis or Palestinians.

This captures the absolute sense of pessimism commonly felt regarding the chances of the two-state option ever being realized, which currently appears to be our grim reality today. But the results are also an expression of the growing acceptance on both sides that it is inconceivable for either state to live without dominating the other — and therefore impossible to live in peace.

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