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Hugo Chavez elected to power

1998
Hugo Chavez elected to power
  • In the 1980s, under President Andres Perez, a fall in crude oil prices created an economic depression in Venezuela.
  • In 1992, amid widespread disenchantment and protests, Hugo Chavez, a Colonel in the Venezuelan Army attempted 2 coups following which he was arrested and pardoned in 1994
  • In 1998, Chavez was elected to power and launched the 'Bolivarian Revolution' and introduced a socialist constitution.

What is socialism?

Fact
Information

Socialism is a political system characterized by social (common) rather than private ownership of means of production, land, resources etc. Exercising democratic control over these resources is a key aspect of socialism.

Chavez's reforms and ouster

1998-2002
Chavez's reforms and ouster
  • A defining aspect of Chavez's rule was an outright defiance of US foreign policy and interests in Venezuela.
  • In 2001, Chavez announced land and oil industry reforms which diluted the National Assembly's powers and consolidated his.
  • In 2002, several anti-government protesters were killed in clashes with the National Guard.
  • The military high command announced Chavez's resignation and took him into custody in 2002.

Chavez returns to power

2002-2013
Chavez returns to power
  • The interim government collapsed in 2002 and Chavez came back to power.
  • Chavez introduced several socialist reform laws and nationalized the oil & gas sector and several central banks.
  • He cultivated and maintained close bilateral ties with Iraq, Iran and Russia in defiance of US warnings against doing so.
  • He was voted to power for four successive Presidential terms until his death in 2013.

The death of Hugo Chavez

Death
The death of Hugo Chavez
  • In 2011, Chavez revealed that he was suffering from cancer and traveled to Cuba extensively for treatment.
  • In 2012, Chavez claimed he had fully recovered from cancer and won the Presidential election.
  • Soon afte,r he stated that he would be traveling for more medical treatment as the cancer relapsed.
  • On 5 March 2013, Chavez died in Caracas and Vice President Maduro was appointed President.

Nicolas Maduro- the high and the low

Fact
Information

In 2013 Maduro's public approval rating stood at 45-50% due to Hugo Chavez's endorsement of him. By the end of 2014, it plummeted to a mere 24% due to deteriorating economic conditions.

Protests, arrests and elections

2013-2015
Protests, arrests and elections
  • In 2013, reeling under 50% inflation, the assembly gave Maduro emergency powers, a move widely protested by the opposition and civilians.
  • In 2014, student protests began over deteriorating economic conditions and rising crime and several protesters were killed in government action.
  • The Venezuelan economy continued to slow down with falling oil prices and protests against government policies continued into late 2015.

Opposition wins parliamentary majority in Venezuela

7 Dec 2015
Opposition wins parliamentary majority in Venezuela
  • As polling ended in Venezuela's National Assembly elections, the National Election Commission announced that the opposition secured a parliamentary majority with 99 seats.
  • The Socialists won 46 seats and President Maduro said he recognized "the adverse results" and acknowledged his party's defeat.
  • Socialists loyal to former President Hugo Chavez have ruled Venezuela since 1998 and the results signal an end to socialism in Venezuela.