In the carnival-mirror world of Venezuelan politics, Nicolás Maduro was sworn in as president on Friday, just hours after election officials agreed to carry out a partial recount of the vote result, which opponents hoped could lead to its being overturned. Women with fake mustaches showed support for Mr. Maduro during the swearing-in ceremonies. His win is being contested. Mr. Maduro was elected Sunday by a narrow margin less than six weeks after the death of his mentor, Hugo Chávez, the charismatic socialist. He beat Henrique Capriles Radonski, who refused to recognize the results and called for a recount, claiming that he was the true winner. Tensions ran high afterward, with protests, scattered violence and both sides blaming the other for several deaths. The inauguration was delayed for hours because Mr. Maduro had been in Lima, Peru, until well past midnight at a special meeting of the Union of South American Nations, which had been called to discuss the situation in Venezuela.
Shortly before the meeting began in Lima, the National Electoral Council in Caracas said it would grant Mr. Capriles’s request for a review of the election results. Mr. Capriles said he believed that the review would turn up evidence of irregularities that would “show the country the truth” about the election.
After a meeting of several South American presidents, the organization released a statement recognizing Mr. Maduro as Venezuela’s new president.
The statement also took “positive note” of the decision to carry out the partial recount and called for dialogue and toleration.
The inauguration was attended by many Latin American heads of state, including the leaders of Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia and Peru. Two allies of Mr. Chávez’s sat side by side: Presidents Raúl Castro of Cuba and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad of Iran.