Venezuelan voters send strong message to U.S. leader: Maduro



Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro said on Tuesday the outcome of last weekend's regional elections had sent a strong message to U.S. President Donald Trump.

Sunday's elections saw the ruling socialist party PSUV win 17 out of 23 states and the opposition Democratic Unity Roundtable (MUD) only won five states in the regional elections, according to the National Electoral Council.

"Our people have been wise, our people have sent a brutal message to the imperialist government of Donald Trump, to his regional allies and to the local right wing," Maduro told local and international media gathered for a press conference.

"Venezuela has just undergone a very important electoral process that has influenced the future of the (national) situation for this year and coming years," he said.

Maduro also defended the election process in the wake of the MUD refusing to recognize the election results.

"In Venezuela it is impossible to carry out electoral fraud because the system is automated and audited at every stage: before, during and after" votes are cast, he said.

In Venezuela, each voter registers his or her fingerprint at the voting machine to begin the process. Once the vote is cast, the machine issues a voting slip that is deposited in a ballot box.