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CHÁVEZ'S HEALTH

Chávez's attendance at Mercosur summit in Brasilia is confirmed

Brazilian Ambassador in Caracas, José Antonio Marcondes, confirmed the Venezuelan president's attendance at the meeting. This would be Chávez's second trip to a country other than Cuba in one year

EL UNIVERSAL
Monday December 03, 2012  08:26 PM
President Hugo Chávez, who is undergoing medical treatment in Havana, Cuba, as part of his recovery from cancer, will attend the Summit of the Common Market of the South (Mercosur) to be held on Friday in Brasilia, Brazil's ambassador in Caracas José Antonio Marcondes told Reuters.

Chávez traveled to Cuba unexpectedly last week to receive hyperbaric oxygenation therapy. His date of return has not been announced so far. Therefore, his presence in Brazil could dispel doubts about his health.

"Yes, it is confirmed (Chávez's attendance to the summit)," said Monday Ambassador Marcondes on the sidelines of a diplomatic event in Caracas, when asked about Chávez's participation in the meeting.

Later, a Brazilian government source said on condition of anonymity that "there is expectation about Chávez's participation at the summit, but there is still no confirmation." Attendance can be confirmed even the day before the summit.

If the Venezuelan president actually attends the meeting, this would be his second visit to a country other than Cuba in one year. In late July, he visited Brazil on the occasion of Venezuela's entry into Mercosur customs union.

Diplomatic sources have hinted that Chávez would possibly travel from Havana directly to Brasilia to attend the summit.
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Is protest over?

That political protest in Venezuela has lost momentum seems pretty obvious: people are no longer building barricades to block off streets near Plaza Francia in Altamira (eastern Caracas), an anti-government stronghold; no new images have been shown of brave and dashing protesters with bandanna-covered faces clashing with the National Guard in San Cristóbal, in the western state of Táchira; and those who dreamed of a horde of "Gochos" (Tachirans) descending  in an avalanche to stir up revolt in Caracas have been left with no option but to wake up to reality.

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