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CHÁVEZ'S HEALTH

President Hugo Chávez not to attend Mercosur summit

A spokesperson for the Brazilian Ministry of Foreign Affairs told AFP that Vice-President Nicolás Maduro would represent Chávez at the meeting in Brasilia

EL UNIVERSAL
Thursday December 06, 2012  07:51 AM
Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez will not take part in the summit of the Common Market of the South (Mercosur) to be held on Friday in Brasilia, the Brazilian Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced on Thursday. This will be the first summit of the bloc with Venezuela as full member of the regional organization.

"President Chávez is not coming to the summit. Venezuela will be represent by (Foreign Affairs Minister and Executive Vice-President) Nicolás Maduro," a spokesperson for the Brazilian Foreign Ministry told AFP.
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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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