Grandson of Holocaust survivors narrowly loses Venezuelan presidency

(JTA) — Venezuelan opposition leader Henrique Capriles, the grandson of Holocaust survivors, narrowly lost the country’s presidential election.

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Nicolas Maduro, acting president and the late president Hugo Chavez’s preferred successor, was declared the winner of Sunday’s election.

The official election results of Sunday’s national election put Maduro at 50.7 percent of the vote and Capriles at 49.1 percent of the vote, representing a difference of 235,000 ballots.

Capriles has called for a recount, saying there were voting irregularities, and has not accepted Maduro’s declaration of victory, Reuters reported.

Chavez died of cancer on March 5. Maduro will serve out the remainder of his six-year term.

Last October in national elections, Capriles won 44 percent of the vote but lost to Chavez by 11 percentage points.

During the 2012 presidential campaign, state-run media urged Venezuelans to reject “international Zionism” and vote against Capriles, describing him as having “a platform opposed to our national and independent interests.”

Chavez also said the Mossad, Israel’s secret service, was out to kill him and accused Israel of financing Venezuela’s opposition. Government media described Capriles as “Jewish-Zionist bourgeoisie.”

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