Venezuela after Hugo Chávez

DOI: 10.20542/0131-2227-2014-7-67-77

 E. Dabagyan, Institute of Latin America, Russian Academy of Sciences (ILA RAN), 21/16 B. Ordynka Str., Moscow, 115035, Russian Federation (

Abstract. The article reviews socio-political processes in Venezuela after the death (March 5, 2013) of the president Hugo Chávez. The death of the charismatic leader put the problem of early election on the agenda. The election took place on April 14. The course of the rapid campaign is highlighted. The Establishment was represented by the executive vice president Nicolás Maduro, whom the head of the state had appointed his successor not long before his death. The united opposition nominated Henrique Capriles, the governor of the state Miranda. The destiny of the project of “socialism of the 21st century” was at stake. The Establishment used administrative resources and created a lot of obstacles to the rival. N. Maduro came top although with the tiniest margin. The municipal elections were held in December. Although the authority improved its results, it suffered defeat in the cities where the middle class lived. The society split up into two parts.

The article gives special attention to socio-economic troubles and failed attempts to deal with them. It is emphasized that a relative welfare of the poorest groups of the population had its reversed side, which included almost absolute exhaustion of dollar-bringing industry and huge inflation. There are difficulties with the food supply. The citizens are also seriously troubled by a very high crime rate. Serious discontent burst out on February 12, 2014 on the Youth Day, when the people took to the streets, with students in the vanguard. Mass actions lasted for a long time. The authorities who regarded this unrest as an attempt of a coup, reacted quickly, using the force. These events caused an anxiety of the world’s community which called on the confronting sides to cease violence and begin negotiations as well as offered to serve as intermediary. Three scenarios of political development of the country are given as a conclusion.

Keywords: Venezuela, Constitution, Hugo Chávez, Nicolás Maduro, Henrique Capriles, Diosdado Cabello, elections, foreign policy, domestic policy, socio-economic situation, extraordinary powers

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For citation:
Dabagyan E. Venezuela after Hugo Chávez. World Eonomy and International Relations, 2014, no. 7, pp. 67-77.

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