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Peru to convene meeting of Lima Group over Venezuela election

Peru to convene meeting of Lima Group over Venezuela election

The president of Venezuela's National Electoral Council announced the date of the presidential election after government and opposition parties failed to come to an agreement on how to conduct the election fairly.

In the face of daily protests past year, the opposition demanded elections.

His foes are split about whether they should run against him. Maduro said that the opposition should "incorporate into the elections and leave behind violence". But now its most popular leaders - including Leopoldo López, Henrique Capriles and Antonio Ledezma - have been imprisoned, forced into exile and banned from running for office. Several countries, including major Latin American countries, have already said the vote will lack legitimacy.

Opposition supporters said an April election does not give them time to rally around a unifying candidate, and they said the election will be neither free nor fair.

Julio Borges, the opposition spokesman in the talks, claimed that the government did not attend a meeting yesterday and that he has not even received the proposal following the comments they submitted. "We're talking. of hours until we respond to the nation", he told local radio.

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Venezuela's fractured opposition coalition has not selected a candidate or decided if it will boycott the election.

Despite the near collapse of the Venezuelan economy including severe food and medicine shortages and hyperinflation, Maduro considers himself a sure-thing having stated: "I know the people love me".

Maduro, 55, who narrowly won elections in 2013 to replace former President Hugo Chavez, is the favorite to win the presidential vote. Meanwhile, analyst Gustavo Espinoza rejected the campaign of media manipulation against the Bolivarian process and against Maduro, who, he said, will come to defend the sovereignty of his country and the region and condemn the arrogance of the US government.

Cateriano deplored the statement by Kuczynski, who yesterday said that Maduro is invited to the summit and referred to a possible reaction of the Venezuelan immigrants to that visit.

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