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Venezuela and other South American Countries Meet with Arab League

The first ever South America-Arab League summit ended today. Although it was organized to foment South-South trade between the two regions, political debates won the day. The final declaration declared support for a Palestinian state, but recognized the new Iraqi government; declared its rejection of terrorism, but supported nations and peoples right to resist.

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Cuba and Venezuela Create a Transnational Construction Company

As a means to deepen the Bolivarian Alternative for the Americas as well as to resolve the housing shortage throughout Latin America, Cuba and Venezuela created a transnational construction company yesterday. This company will be launched with Cuban machinery and equipment and Venezuelan capital.

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Venezuela's Arms Purchases are a "Closed Issue" for Colombia

Colombia’s Foreign Minister Carolina Barco said today that Venezuelan arms purchases are a "closed issued" for the Colombian government. Colombia plans to focus on cultivating joint projects with Venezuela and on securing their joint border.

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Venezuela’s National Assembly to Investigate Oil Contracts

According to an investigation by Venezuela’s Energy Ministry, some transnational oil companies currently operating in Venezuela have evaded taxes and could owe the government as much as US$2 billion. “Here, one average person pays more taxes than a transnational,” said the head of Venezuela’s tax agency.

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Chávez: US Military Presence in Colombia a Concern for Venezuela

Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez says that US military presence in Colombia is a threat for the entire region, particularly the illegal activities carried out by US soldiers in Colombia and the impunity from Colombian justice they enjoy.

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Energy Minister Blames Venezuelan Media for Fabricating Oil Industry Crisis

The Minister of Energy and Petroleum accused Venezuela's media and opposition interests of engaging in a difamation campaign against the country's state-owned oil industry. According to the Minister, rumors of lay-offs and misappropriated funds are all false.

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U.S. Officials Soften Stance Towards Venezuela, Chavez Welcomes Move

High-level US officials soften comments on Venezuela in the wake of Rice’s goodwill trip of Latin America. US officials and new Secretary-General of the Organization of American States (OAS) share rhetoric, in reference to Venezuela.

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Venezuela's Economy Grew 5% during First Quarter of 2005

According to Venezuelan Finance Minister Nelson Merentes, Venezuela's economy grew by over five percent during the first three months of the year. Merentes believes that earlier predictions of five percent growth for the year were low and that Venezuela's economic growth for 2005 is likely to reach between eight and ten percent.

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Armed Forces Protect Venezuela’s Oil Fields

Defense Minister General Garcia Carneiro reported that installations of Venezuela's state-owned oil company PDVSA in the western part of the country are under military custody to protect against acts of sabotage. The announcement came as reports of declined oil production increased.

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Venezuela’s Supreme Court Approves Extradition for Cuban-Venezuelan Terrorist

The Venezuelan Supreme Court approved an extradition petition for Luis Posada Carriles, a Cuban-Venezuelan convicted of organizing a terrorist act that blew up a civilian Cuban airline in 1976 and killed 73 people. Posada recently entered the US and is applying for political asylum there.

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Opposition Poll: Venezuela’s Chavez Approval Rating at 70.5%

According to the polling firm Datanálisis, over the course of the past nine months Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez's approval rating has increased from 59% to 70.5%. 58.2% of Venezuelans have confidence in the president.

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Venezuela’s Chavez the Second Most Important Leader in Latin America Says Poll

According to a Latin America-wide public opinion survey Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez's domestic popularity increased from 25% to 65%, the most impressive rebound in the region. The survey found that the Presidents of Cuba, Venezuela and Brazil enjoyed the "most important leader in Latin America" status.

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Chavez Affirms Venezuela is Heading Towards Socialism of 21st Century

President Chavez once again affirmed that his government is taking Venezuela towards socialism, a socialism that still needed to be constructed for the 21st Century. Rival May Day marches took place again in Caracas and ended without incident.

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Venezuela and Cuba Deepen Relations and Support Alternative to FTAA

With the FTAA "in pieces," Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez and Fidel Castro signed 49 agreements designed to consolidate the Bolivarian Alternative for the Americas (ALBA). Also, Venezuela opened branch offices of its state-owned oil company and bank.

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Venezuela Expropriates Abandoned Valve Factory

The Venezuelan government expropriated a valve factory that had been closed since 2003. The factory, Inveval, is the second ‘recuperated’ factory in a recent campaign to put abandoned and bankrupt factories back into production under worker-state co-management.

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