Nicolas Maduro's victory in the Venezuelan presidential election was narrower than anticipated. Nonetheless, it was clear enough. Yet the US government now seems to be playing politics with the outcome, emboldening Venezuela's opposition coalition by refusing to accept the results and trying to discredit Maduro's mandate.
The death of Hugo Chávez leaves the future of Venezuela in the balance. With elections set for early April, the question of who will replace him takes on new urgency. Here we survey the runners and riders, from the obvious choices within Chávez's PSUV and the opposition MUD to outliers on both sides.
Over the coming days and weeks, plenty will be said on Chavez. Some analysis will be fair and well researched; other accounts will pass through the distorting lens of Western interests. As the case of Suharto demonstrates, this lens can play optical tricks, indeed millions can be wiped from the record.
Vice President Nicolas Maduro announced on 5 March that the controversial figure and President of Venezuela, Hugo Chavez, is dead. Having battled with cancer since 2011, news of the death of the 58 year old will not have surprised many yet Chavez's sudden departure has led to questions of what will happen next.