Venezuelan President Maduro says he will veto amnesty laws

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro says he will veto amnesty laws, following defeat by opposition in legislative elections

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro gestures as he speaks during a meeting with governors and ministers at Miraflores Palace in Caracas, in this handout picture provided by Miraflores Palace on December 7, 2015.

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro vowed to prevent any move by the opposition members to grant amnesty to the participants of the mass civil unrest of 2014, following his party’s defeat in legislative elections.

"I will not accept any amnesty law, because they violated human rights," Maduro said. "They can send me a thousand laws but the murderers have to be prosecuted and have to pay."

The opposition aims secure the release of jailed politicians such as opposition leader Leopoldo Lopez who was sentenced to 13 years in prison in September for provoking anti-government 2014 protests in the country that claimed 43 lives.

Venezuelan opposition won the parliamentary elections on Sunday, ending the ruling Socialist Party majority in the legislature after 16 years.

Country’s election board announced the opposition Democratic Unity coalition won supermajority with 112 of 167 seats in the National Assembly while the United Socialist Party of Venezuela (PSUV) of President Nicolas Maduro won 55 seats.

The unprecedented opposition victory also gives the coalition strength needed to draft a new constitution to end Maduro’s tenure and to remove Supreme Court justices.

Maduro initially acknowledged the victory of the opposition saying “We are here, with morals and ethics, to recognise these adverse results,” saying in a speech in capital Caracas.

However, later he said “The bad guys won, like the bad guys always do, through lies and fraud," said Maduro. Workers of the fatherland know that you have a president, a son of Chavez, who will protect you.”

He also announced a cabinet reshuffle but gave no further details.

Maduro government refuses to change economic policies that opposition believes lead to the worst economic crises since independence. New legislators plan to pressure the government into revealing inflation datas as well as launching investigations into corruption.

TRTWorld and agencies