Ottawa, April 13, 2015. The Embassy of Venezuela in Canada held a meeting of solidarity and fraternity with the Canadian Muslim community of the Islamic Society of York Region, part of the greater metropolitan area of Toronto, whose leader Zafar Bangash, expressed his full support to President Nicholas Maduro and the Bolivarian Government on behalf of their community.
Ambassador Wilmer Barrientos in his opening remarks expressed great emotion "We are jubilant. This visit is the continuation of a strategic partnership project, an alliance under construction between the Muslim people and the Venezuelan people". The Ambassador emphasized the role of the Muslim world and of Latin America in building a more just, humane world and that recognizes the dignity of its people.
For his part, representative of the Muslim-Canadian community, Zafar Bangash expressed that the ties of friendship and brotherhood between the two peoples date back to the initial days of Eternal Commander Hugo Chavez’s Government and now have been renewed by Nicolas Maduro.
During the meeting, a detailed historical and political account of the Venezuelan situation was done by Ambassador Barrientos and highlighted why and how did he Commander Chavez came to power: "On December 6, 1998 were held presidential election in Venezuela, which gave to the leader of the Bolivarian Revolution, Hugo Chavez, 56.20 percent of the vote, far outpacing his closest rivals: Henrique Salas Römer with 39.97 percent and Irene Sáez with 2.82 percent. In an accelerated manner, Chavez, native from Barinas, increased his popularity and grew steadily and was supported by traditional parties and private companies that did not see him at first as a strong candidate, in fact it was Irene Sáez who was leading in the polls. However, Sáez popularity fell sharply when COPEI announced the withdrawal of their support. As did also Democratic Action Party with another candidate, Luis Alfaro Ucero and both political parties endorsed instead Salas Römer. Nevertheless, the Bolivarian leader won the election by a margin of one million 60 thousand 524 votes, causing a historical defeat over to the two major powers, AD and COPEI, that kept the South American country mired in poverty for over four decades.
The 1998 presidential election was the beginning of a revolution in which the Venezuelan people came to power and Venezuela began to tread a path for popular participation, inclusion and social justice. As Chavez said at some point "an indelible history" has began to be written.
On February 2, 1999, Chávez assumed the presidency of Venezuela with an oath that marked the beginning of a profound process of change: "I swear before God, I swear before the Nation, I swear before my people that on this dying Constitution (1961) I will push for the democratic transformations necessary for that the new Republic has an adequate Magna Carta for our changing times. I swear! ". Today, 16 years after that historic achievement, the Venezuelan people keep conquering, together with President Nicolas Maduro, and deepen the legacy of inclusion, sovereignty and revolution initiated by Commander Chavez, said the Ambassador.
Other Muslim leaders like Morteza Gorgzadeh expressed their solidarity in support of the campaign: Venezuela is not a threat, We are hope. We, young Muslims, demand that Barack Obama withdraw the unjustified accusation imposed on the Venezuelan Government, and that Venezuela is not alone, the Iranian people will always be there to support it, he added.