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Secretary Colin L. Powell - Venezuelan Referendum

Venezuelan Referendum

Secretary Colin L. Powell
Washington, DC
August 11, 2004

Venezuela s August 15 presidential recall referendum is an opportunity for the Venezuelan people to exercise their constitutional and democratic rights. If conducted freely, fairly, and transparently, the referendum will be an important step towards a peaceful, electoral, democratic, and constitutional solution of Venezuela s long-standing political crisis.

Effective electoral observation is vital to the credibility of this referendum. The United States strongly supports the work of the Organization of American States and the Carter Center. We urge that they be given the unrestricted access necessary to do their jobs.

The United States calls on all Venezuelans to reject violence and intimidation and to respect the rights of others. Venezuela s future is in the hands of its citizens. The United States stands firmly with them as they seek to strengthen their democracy and promote national reconciliation. 2004/892


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