CARACAS, Tuesday June 28, 2005 | Update
Cuban President Fidel Castro arrived Tuesday in Puerto La
Cruz, eastern Anzoátegui state, to take part in a meeting
of presidents and heads of State on Petrocaribe, an initiative
proposed by the Venezuelan government to foster energy integration
in the region.
Castro was welcomed by President Hugo Chávez and Information and Communication Minister Andrés Izarra, who had earlier denied the Cuban leader's visit to Venezuela. Izarra even lashed out at the media for spreading reports that Castro would take part in the meeting.
When asked about his expectations regarding the summit, Castro replied: "This is a historical event."
Chávez explained that on Sunday he said Castro would not attend the meeting because that is the information he had.
"For me, Venezuela is first; I mean, fighting for the Caribbean, for the peoples of America," said the Cuban President, who explained that he decided to go to Venezuela as he considers that this energy summit is very important.
02:57 PM. HEAVY RAINS. Venezuelan Executive Vice-President Elias Jaua reported that the government is designing plans to support farmers, cattlemen and peasants of the state of Mérida who have been hit by heavy rains that have caused crop losses.