Venezuelans went to the polls this Sunday (19) for a mock national referendum to claim the country’s sovereignty over the Esequibo territory, which is in dispute with Guyana. The popular consultation, promoted by the Venezuelan government, will be held on December 3rd.

The objective of the simulation, carried out across the country, is for voters to familiarize themselves with the use of the ballot boxes and with the five referendum questions: on the rejection of a report from 1899; support for the 1966 Geneva Agreement; the non-recognition of the Hague Court to judge the case; opposition to Guyana’s stance and the creation of a new state called Guyana Esequiba.

The answer must be “yes” or “no” and more than 21 million Venezuelans are eligible to participate, according to the National Electoral Council (CNE).

For the national coordinator of the Venezuela Toda Campaign command, legislator Jorge Rodríguez, the simulation was successful. “It exceeded all the goals we had, to also evaluate the mobilization, the reach of the campaign,” he said, according to Telesur.

The president of the CNE, Elvis Amoroso, highlighted that the 800 voting centers were fully operational, which allowed the world to witness the transparency of the Venezuelan electoral system.

Old dispute

With more than 160 thousand square km, the Esequibo territory has been in dispute between countries since the 19th century. The case was taken to The Hague by Guyana in 2018 against the opinion of Venezuela, which insists that the issue must be resolved by observing a pact signed between Caracas and London in 1966, the Geneva Agreement, when the United Kingdom recognized the Venezuelan demand for the territory.

Editing: Rodrigo Durão Coelho


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