Story highlights He was born in Aragua, Venezuela
He studied law
He was President of the National Assembly from 1999 to 2012
This year, Nicolás Maduro was the sitting president of Venezuela. While he’s considered to be the longer-serving leader of the country, his brother, Nicolas Maduro, has been president since 2016.
This past year has been especially difficult for Venezuela. A devastating economic crisis, fueled in part by hyperinflation, has left millions of people struggling to make ends meet. Last month, the nation’s opposition-controlled National Assembly asked the Organization of American States to call on Maduro to step down amid the uncertainty.
Venezuela was so dire in 2018 that the country’s National Assembly requested the release of all political prisoners in July 2018. The U.S. and some European nations imposed further sanctions against the government earlier this year, including restrictions on the government-owned oil company PDVSA. The country’s economy is in a free fall and has seen a massive drop in oil production due to the sanctions.
Most recently, in early October, the World Bank’s country economic outlook for Venezuela stated that “delays in the collection of payments on government debt … have pushed Venezuela’s foreign exchange reserves to their lowest level since Maduro assumed office in 2013.”
So far, Maduro has survived the legal challenges and economic volatility. However, many have criticized his extreme control over the country’s politics and economy, and the country’s path toward destruction, and believe he has only done so to maintain power.