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Venezuelan Judge Rules NGO Will Face Trial for Treason

Venezuelan NGO Súmate appeared in court this week on charges of “conspiracy against the political form of the nation.” The Public Prosecutor says that Súmate used foreign funding from the U.S.-government funded National Endowment for Democracy (NED) to finance a political campaign, rather than for the educational purposes for which Súmate leaders claim to have used the funds.

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Venezuelan University Students’ Murders Lead to Restructuring of Police Force

After the brutal murders of three university students on June 29th, the Venezuelan Minister of the Interior and of Justice announced that divisions of the Military Intelligence Directorate (DIM) will be eliminated or reorganized and that the national forensic police (Cicpc) will be restructured.

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Venezuela-US Business Roundtable Reaches $600 Million

Last week 249 Venezuelan and American businesses gathered in Caracas for a macro business roundtable that generated US$624.5 million in less than 48 hours. At the event’s close, Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez used American words to describe the Third World’s historic and current biggest challenge.

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Venezuela Accepts Responsibility for 3 Disappearances in 1999

The Venezuela state accepted responsibility for the disappearances of three men at the hands of state military and police during riots in the state of Vargas in December, 1999. The case has been before the Inter-American Court for Human Rights since 2000.

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US-Venezuela Business Roundtable Inaugurated in Caracas

Venezuelan and U.S. business leaders gathered in Caracas for the opening session of a macro business round between the two countries. Despite continuing political tensions, Venezuela-US trade is increasing, and remains a priority, say officials of both countries.

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Venezuela’s Attorney General: Prosecutor’s Assassination Intended to Destabilize Chávez Government

Venezuela’s Attorney General Isaías Rodríguez affirmed that state prosecutor Danilo Anderson’s assassination “was political and its principal purpose was to destabilize the country.” The group behind the assassination is composed both of Venezuelans and foreigners and had over $20 million at their disposition.

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Petrocaribe to Deepen Integration of Venezuela and other Caribbean Nations

The new regional grouping Petrocaribe is supposed to integrate the countries of the Caribbean more closely by stabilizing the oil prices and economies of oil importers. A US State Department letter that accused Venezuela of being undemocratic appeared to attempt to derail the meeting.

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Summit of Caribbean Nations Launch Petrocaribe in Venezuela

During the first Caribbean Energy Summit delegations from fifteen Caribbean nations meet in Venezuela to launch Petrocaribe, an oil initiative that provides Caribbean nations with oil at below-market prices and furthers solidifies regional integration.

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Venezuela to Prove It Has World’s Largest Oil Reserves

According to Venezuela’s state-owned oil company, PdVSA, calculations putting the South American nation’s oil reserves at 78 billion barrels of oil are severely underestimated due to the fact that the 238 billion barrels of unconventional crude located in the country’s Orinoco Belt have not been included in the assessments.

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Pro-Government Forces Charge Opposition wants to Discredit Upcoming Local Vote

Venezuelan NGO Súmate and political parties in opposition to President Hugo Chávez are worried that automated voting mechanisms for the upcoming municipal council and congressional elections will not guarantee a secret ballot for voters. MVR candidates assure automated process will increase fairness and transparency.

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Hitmen Attempt to Assasinate Venezuelan Land Reform Leader

Land reform leader Braulio Alvarez barely escaped an assassination attempt last Thursday, after receiving three gunshot wounds. Violence against peasant activists has increased dramatically since a Land Reform law was passed in 2001. Human Rights groups charge that inadequate progress has been made in investigations.

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Venezuela’s Chavez Announces Second Stage of Food Distribution Network

With to an additional investment of $295 million, Mission Mercal will reach 15 million Venezuelans by the end of the year, up from 10 million now. 1,000 soup kitchens were inaugurated yesterday, bringing the total to over 5,000 and expanding the network’s capacity to provide over 900,000 poor with free food every day.

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Venezuela Creates New State-Owned Petrochemical Company

President Chavez announced the creation of a new state-owned petrochemical company, which will double the production of petrochemicals in Venezuela and would supply fertilizer, building materials, and other products for Venezuela’s internal market.

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Environment Ministry Presents Venezuela’s Strategy on Climate Change

Venezuela's Environment Ministry says that climate change has affected Venezuela with higher average temperatures, more erratic rainfall, and less rainfall in some areas. The government's strategy for reducing its greenhouse gas emissions will involve an education campaign and a reforestation program.

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Venezuela Courts US Investment for Upcoming Business Roundtable

Venezuela is preparing for a business roundtable to be held in Caracas, June 30 to July 1, at which U.S. investors will learn about investment opportunities in Venezuela. Plastics, agriculture, and fisheries are of particular interest to Venezuela.

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