CARACAS, Tuesday December 11, 2012 | Update

Communication minister: Chávez is being operated as per protocol

Communication Minister Ernesto Villegas on Tuesday reported that President Hugo Chávez was "absolutely confident that he will overcome the obstacles." He noted that authorities will continue to report on Chávez's progress

Collective prayers downtown Caracas for the Venezuelan president's health (Photo: Reuters)
Tuesday December 11, 2012  07:55 PM
Minister of Communication and Information Ernesto Villegas reported in the afternoon on Tuesday, in a mandatory nationwide radio and television broadcast, that President Hugo Chávez is being operated on in Cuba, "according to the established protocol."

Villegas said the Venezuelan president "woke up on Tuesday, December 11, with great force and inspiration; his mind focused on the welfare of the people." He added that Chávez was "absolutely confident that he will overcome the obstacles."

The minister further stated that the Government will continue "united with the Venezuelan people and the brothers of the world in a prayer for the commander."

He explained that he would continue to inform about "the progress made in Chávez's process to regain full health."

At noon, Villegas, in a mandatory nationwide radio and televisión broadcast, read a statement saying that the medical team of President Chávez in Havana reported that the Venezuelan president was performing the pre-operational protocol.

However, two hours earlier, President of Ecuador Rafael Correa, who visited Chávez Monday in the Caribbean island, said on his Twitter account that his Venezuelan counterpart was undergoing at that very moment "a very delicate operation."

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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