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News > Venezuela

Essequibo Referendum Drill Was Successful: President Maduro

  • Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro, Nov. 20, 2023.

    Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro, Nov. 20, 2023. | Photo: X/ @PresidencialVen

Published 21 November 2023

The Bolivarian leader also analyzed the evolution of his country's relations with Colombia and Paraguay.

On Monday, the Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro congratulated citizen participation in the Essequibo referendum drill that took place on Sunday, November 19.


Essequibo Referendum Drill Broke Participation Records

"Three and a half million people approached to learn about the process, participate, listen, and observe. It was an impressive turnout," he declared, emphasizing that the referendum simulation demonstrated Venezuela's robust, technological, and advanced electoral system.

The Bolivarian leader congratulated the National Electoral Council (CNE) and praised the commitment of the electoral authorities in conducting the consultative referendum simulation.

"I congratulate the CNE. This new Board of Directors has shown to be fortunate and brilliant. They made decisions unanimously and they truly provided the Venezuelan people with the greatest technological support for this simulation," he said, noting that Venezuela is the only country that conducts electoral drills.

"People go through fingerprint verification device, become familiar with the electoral ballot, get motivated, and discuss the process with their families. It's a peace festival. Yesterday the credibility of the CNE before the Venezuelan people was strengthened," Maduro said.

On Sunday, the CNE reported that the referendum drill complied with all technical, logistical, and operational protocols, confirming the effectiveness of the process.

On December 3, Venezuelans will participate in a referendum in which they will vote on the territory of Essequibo. This democratic process seeks to counteract the actions of ExxonMobil, a transnational company that, with the support of the United States and Guyana, intends to extract oil in the waters of Venezuela and areas that have not yet been delimited.

Maduro Warns Against Campaign to Divide Colombia and Venezuela

The Bolivarian leader warned about the existence of transnational propaganda campaigns to once again confront and divide the governments and peoples of Colombia and Venezuela.

"They run dirty campaigns in Colombian, Venezuelan, and international public opinion to pit us against each other and divide us," he said, urging the peoples of both nations to put an end to aggressions and advocate for cooperation.

"We must say, 'Enough of attacks and divisions'. The time for peace, cooperation and deep brotherhood between Colombia and Venezuela has arrived."

Maduro also highlighted the agenda of Colombian President Gustavo Petro during his visit to Caracas, including presenting his book "One Life, Many Lives" at the International Book Fair.

The Venezuelan president pointed out that Petro expressed "profound concepts of the progressive changes in Latin America and the world." Maduro also mentioned that they discussed issues related to the binational agenda during their meeting.

Maduro Urges Guyana to Adhere to the Geneva Agreement

Maduro urged Guyanese President Irfaan Ali to adhere to the Geneva Agreement and criticized his inconsistent actions in allowing ExxonMobil to undertake oil projects in Venezuelan territorial waters and others yet to be delimited.

"The Venezuelan people will not allow them to take advantage of our seas and territory," the Bolivarian leader told the Guyanese president.

"You are violating international law... Irfaan Ali, you violated the Geneva Agreement, and the only path left for you is to return to negotiations within the framework of the Geneva Agreement. You have no other way," Maduro emphasized, stating that Venezuelans will respond to such attempts to dismiss their rights with their votes in the Essequibo referendum.

Paraguay and Venezuela Reestablish Diplomatic Relations

The Bolivarian president also celebrated the full reestablishment of political, diplomatic, and consular relations between Paraguay and Venezuela.

"I am glad and celebrate that Paraguay and Venezuela have fully restored relations. Now we will build new commercial ties through comprehensive cooperation," Maduro said, recalling that the President-elect of Paraguay, Santiago Peña, recognized him as the only legitimate President of Venezuela.

"In good faith, we are always good and noble. We like to practice dialogue, diplomacy, and understanding. Differences will always exist because each country has a president with an ideology and a party. We must always respect all presidents and governments," the Bolivarian leader pointed out, adding that ideological differences should not dictate the course of diplomatic relations.

The massacre against the Palestinians must stop

On Monday, the Venezuelan President advocated immediately stopping the genocide that the Israeli occupation army is perpetrating against the population in Gaza.

“I call on the people of the world to press in the streets until we manage to stop this genocide and the perpetrators of genocide are brought to justice,” he said.

Maduro also condemned the violence that the Israel exercises against the Palestinians and compared the current situation in Gaza with the holocaust that the Jewish people suffered during World War II.

“This genocide is reminiscent of Hitler's massacres against the Jewish people. It reminds us of the reprehensible and condemnable holocaust. Many remained silent when the persecution against the Jewish people in Nazi Germany began,” the Venezuelan president recalled.

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