18 August 2004
Secretary-General Welcomes Peaceful, Orderly Conduct of Recall Referendum in Venezuela
NEW YORK, 17 August (UN Headquarters) -- The following statement was issued today by the Spokesman for Secretary-General Kofi Annan:
The Secretary-General welcomes the peaceful and orderly manner in which the 15 August recall referendum on President Chávez mandate was conducted in Venezuela. He also welcomes the fact that an unprecedented number of Venezuelans participated in the referendum, demonstrating a great sense of responsibility and respect for democratic values.
The Secretary-General has taken note of the preliminary voting results announced by the National Electoral Council (CNE), as well as of the declaration made by the Organization of American States and the Carter Center confirming the preliminary results, indicating that the voters had rejected the recall of the President.
The Secretary-General once again appeals to all Venezuelans to settle all matters related to the referendum in the same civic and democratic spirit that prevailed during the voting. He reminds the Government of Venezuela and all political sectors that, when his Special Adviser visited Caracas from 20 to 24 July, they all committed themselves to resolve issues related to the referendum through consultations and dialogue. Therefore, he calls on them to engage in a constructive dialogue looking towards Venezuelas future.
The United Nations will continue to support the people of Venezuela in their search for a peaceful solution to their political differences.
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