Venezuelan opposition leader Henrique Capriles has refused to accept ruling party candidate Nicolas Maduro’s narrow election victory and demanded a recount.
"Today’s loser is you," he told a news conference on Monday, referring to Maduro, adding: "We won’t recognise a result until every vote has been counted".
The National Electoral Council said late on Sunday that Maduro won 50.66 percent of the vote compared to 49.07 percent for Capriles - a difference of less than 300,000 ballots - allowing him to carry forward the policies of the late Hugo Chavez.
Venezuela uses electronic voting machines that print a paper ballot as a backup for any recounts.
"There should be no doubts about the election results. The institutions are functioning. If 7,500,000 Venezuelans said that Nicolas Maduro should be the president of the republic until 2019, this must be respected; the democracy and the power of the majority," Maduro said, addressing a crowd from the Miraflores presidential palace.
But, he said he would welcome an audit.
"We are calling for respect of the results. If they want do an audit they are welcome to do it. They can do whatever audit they want to do. We trust in the Venezuelan electoral system. We welcome an audit," said Maduro.
After a brief and bitter campaign, Venezuelans had waited anxiously for results into Sunday night with counting reportedly too close to call and both sides expressing confidence of victory .
Al Jazeera’s Gabriel Elizondo, reporting from Caracas, said: "We’re hearing that Maduro is going to try and take the presidency today, Monday, and be inaugurated.
"We’ll see how that plays out because I’m sure the opposition is going to try and step in and say perhaps that they want a full audit before that happens. There is a long way for this to go still, the coming days are going to be key."
Capriles said there were attempts to let people vote after polling stations had already closed.
Turnout was 78 per cent, down from just over 80 per cent in the October election that Chavez won by a near 11-point margin.
"This result does not reflect the reality of what Venezuelans want and aspire to," he said in Caracas. "Mr Maduro, if you were illegitimate before, now you are more so.
Former Chief Security Officer for NewsCorp: N. Koreans Not Behind Sony Hack, Interview Leak 2014-12-20 2:17
Hemanshu Nigam, a former federal prosecutor and former chief security officer for NewsCorp/Fox studios, says North Korea isn’t behind the Sony Hack.
Nigam gave several bullet points for why the hack was likely an inside job.
Attack code borrowed from a previous attack on Seoul, that’s why it’s in Korean. Private hackers typically borrow malicious code from other hackers.Nations state attacks follow ...
Sony Fires Back at Obama: Actually We Did Call the White House – Several Times 2014-12-20 2:13 Sony fired back at Obama after the press conference saying they had several conversations with the Obama White House before and after the movie was canceled.
Via The Hollywood Reporter:
After President Obama criticized Sony for its decision to cancel The Interview's release after theater chains decided not to show the film, the studio has issued a statement elaborating on the move.
The Bankster International 2014-12-20 1:55 Geopolitical analysis, the art of explaining power relationships through the prism of impersonal geography, can be a helpful tool for observers of the Great Game – but it also has its limitations. A case in point is the renewed US-Russia confrontation. Think tanks and policy insiders easily sell the narrative that from the dark days of the Cold War to ...
Another banker dies under suspicious circumstances 2014-12-20 1:09 52-year-old Belgian Geert Tack – a private banker for ING who managed portfolios for wealthy individuals – was described as ‘impeccable’, ‘sporty’, ‘cared-for’, and ‘successful’ and so as Vermist reports, after disappearing a month ago, the appearance of his body off the coast of Ostend is surrounded by riddles…
Impeccable. Sporty. Cared for. Successful. Just some qualifications that are attributed to ...
NATO increases military presence on Russia’s borders 2014-12-20 1:14
The Pentagon has confirmed the military buildup along Russia’s borders to ensure long-term “peace and stability” in the region.
Earlier Moscow accused NATO of a sharp increase in air activity and intelligence flights in the border zone.
Replying to RIA Novosti’s query on the increased number of NATO flights around Russia’s borders, a Pentagon representative told the news agency that the military ...