CARACAS, Saturday May 12, 2012 | Update
Chávez's Health | From Havana, Cuba

Back in Venezuela, Chávez says he completed radiation therapy

The Venezuelan president said he successfully completed the cycle of radiation therapy, as scheduled by his medical team

"We must continue to fight the battle of ideas," he said (Photo: EFE)
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Saturday May 12, 2012  07:57 AM

President Hugo Chávez arrived late on Friday at Simón Bolívar International Airport in Maiquetía, after spending 11 days in Havana, Cuba, where he underwent the fifth and sixth cycles of radiation therapy sessions.

At approximately 10:00 pm, Chávez got off the presidential plane and was greeted by several members of his Executive Cabinet, including Vice President Elías Jaua and Foreign Minister Nicolás Maduro.

Following the relevant military honors, the president addressed the nation on a mandatory nationwide radio and television broadcast.

During his speech, Chávez said that during his absence he closely monitored the progress made in his country.

"I have to tell you that in recent days we have successfully concluded the entire course of radiation therapy, as scheduled by the medical team, beyond some discomfort, which is quite normal in this type of treatment. Nothing forced us to stop the plan (...) I hope it works," Chávez said.

Chávez said on Friday around 7 pm on his Twitter account that he had departed from Havana bound for Venezuela, after spending 11 days on the island to receive medical treatment against cancer.

"I am already onboard the plane at the "José Martí" runway, bound for the Venezuelan Fatherland! We are more optimistic than ever! We shall live and overcome!" wrote the Venezuelan president on his Twitter account.

On Venezuelan economy

Based on the positive numbers of the first quarter, Chávez said that Venezuelan economy will grow this year.

"Inflation continues to fall and economic growth in the first quarter will be very good," he said.

"The growth of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) will be very, very good, especially when compared with what is happening in the world (the capitalist crisis)," he said.

Twitter: @ alejandramhf

The end of a cycle

Hundreds of thousands of demonstrators took to the streets of Brazil on March 13 to demand the ouster of embattled President Dilma Rousseff, carrying banners expressing anger at bribery scandals and economic woes. A banner read "We don't want a new Venezuela in Brazil."

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