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CHÁVEZ'S HEALTH | Together with a government team

Venezuelan VP heads for Cuba to meet with President Chávez

Minister of Electric Power Héctor Navarro will stand in for Executive Vice-President Nicolás Maduro

“We need to stand up in a stance of change, self-criticism and solidarity” (TV screen capture)
EL UNIVERSAL
Saturday December 29, 2012  03:39 AM

Venezuelan Vice-President Nicolás Maduro reported on Friday night that he was leaving for Havana, Cuba, to visit Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez, who is recovering from a surgery some weeks ago.

"I will depart for Havana, Cuba, to visit Commander Chávez along with a team of the Bolivarian government," he advised during the sworn-in ceremony of Carlos Mata Figueroa, the new Nueva Esparta state governor. The event was aired by state-run TV channel Venezolana de Televisión, state-owned news agency Agencia Venezolana de Noticias (AVN) quoted.

Maduro said that Minister of Electric Power Héctor Navarro will be the second in command in his absence.

During his speech in Nueva Esparta, the senior officer promised "supreme loyalty to Commander Hugo Chávez and Bolívar's people."

He also urged the forces of ruling United Socialist Party of Venezuela (PSUV) to join efforts to solve current problems and ensure Venezuelans' wellbeing.

"If we are to consolidate the homeland, then, every day we need to stand up, taking a stance of change, self-criticism, humbleness and solidarity."
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The rock of discord

A shipment of over 30,000 tons of phosphate arrived at Puerto Cabello port in late July on board the Shi Long Ling, a Chinese-flagged vessel that began its long journey in northern Africa. The cargo boat docked on July 26 after traveling more than 3,200 nautical miles. Undoubtedly, this would just be considered one in many cargo ships crisscrossing the oceans if it were not for the fact that Venezuela has denounced Western Sahara occupation by Morocco and yet purchases the territory's natural resource products from the occupying power.

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