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6 de octubre de 2012 | |

All Eyes on Venezuela

The significance of the elections for the Latin American integration process

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The presidential elections to define the future of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela will take place on Sunday. However, its consequences go beyond the borders of that country and it will define a turning point in the regional reality of Latin America.

This is what Pablo Kunich, member of the peoples’ communication project Alba TV, told Real World Radio from Caracas. “Venezuela, with this political orientation, is encouraging Latin American integration. A multipolarity against the unipolarity proposed by the US”, he said.

The role played by Venezuela in the rejection to the Latin American Free Trade Area (FTAA) in 2005, and the promotion of integrationist expressions such as the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC), the Bolivarian Alliance (ALBA) or the recent entering of Venezuela into Mercosur mean that the fate of this country, divided between a deepening of the revolutionary process or a step back towards a neoliberal model proposed by the candidate of the opposition, is significant for the reality of the region.

“Social movements recognize in the Venezuelan process a will of change. Before the Bolivarian process, nobody spoke of socialism so strongly”, said Kunich.

The elections will take place on October 7, however the preparations by the communities in the big cities to "make their vote be respected" represents an organizational challenge which has already began. The hypothesis of sabotage and violence are present as a result of the campaign carried out against President Hugo Chavez, giving way to a scenario of uncertainty around the electoral mechanisms.

“There is a risk that the right-wing won’t acknowledge the result of the elections and will invite its followers to do the same”, which could result in violent events, warned Kunich, but acknowledged that the population “is ready”. The fear is based on how the massive media portrays the ratification of the victory of the current administration.

Henrique Capriles, Chavez’ contender at the front of a coalition of right-wing parties, has proposed a dismantling of the state, while he has a long record, despite his young age, which put him at the front of Cuba’s embassy in Caracas in the attacks that coincided with the Coup attempt against Chavez in April, 2001, remembered Kunich.

The communicator also said that after Chavez’ victory, the challenge will be to resume and deepen the basic definitions of the revolution, such as food sovereignty and agroecology promotion policies and maintaining the ban against GM food and crops, among other elements promoted by rural and urban social movements.

Photo: cubadebate.cu

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