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
"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.
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.