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U.S. Threats, Opposition Infighting Help Venezuela’s Nicolás Maduro Cling to Power

LADB Article ID: 80387
Category/Department: Venezuela
Date: 2017-08-25
By: Andrés Gaudín

Just when Venezuela’s internal crisis, along with pressure from abroad, seemed to spell the inevitable fall of the government of President Nicolás Maduro, everything shifted radically in a matter of days, allowing the Partido Socialista Unido de Venezuela (United Socialist Party of Venezuela, PSUV) to reassert its hold over the country. The political astuteness of the PSUV’s leaders, infighting among the members of the Mesa de la Unidad Democrática (Democratic Unity Roundtable, MUD) opposition coalition, and a threat of military intervention issued by US President Donald Trump turned the chaotic situation on its head and allowed “Chavismo” to re-establish control. With Venezuela’s sovereignty now apparently at stake, Maduro even drew a show of solidarity from the majority of Latin American countries, including from governments that oppose him ideologically and had, just days earlier, berated his administration for holding constitutionally questionable elections for an Asamblea Nacional Constituyente (National Constituent Assembly, ANC).

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