Despite US threats of ‘strong and swift economic sanctions’ that the WSJ reported overnight could cut off a crucial source of revenue for Venezuela’s financially distressed state oil company, PDVSA, the socialist state’s leader Nicolas Maduro is claiming victory in a vote to create a new ‘constituent assembly,’ a vote that US government officials have labeled a “sham.”
The ruling Socialist party’s candidates purportedly won all 545 seats in the vote. Venezuela electoral council head Tibisay Lucena said more than 41% of the country’s registered voters participated, a number that is being widely discreditr by outside sources. Per press reports, the assembly will now replace the opposition controlled Congress, which was annulled by the Maduro-allied Supreme Court in March, allowing Maduro to rewrite the country’s constitution, cementing his hold on power as his favorability rating with the public falls below 30%.
The U. S., Colombia, Spain, Peru, the EU and Argentina have already said they will not recognize the results of the vote, which was boycotted by the country’s opposition parties.
This post was published at Zero Hedge on Jul 31, 2017.