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Competing May Day Demonstrations in Venezuela (Again)

Just as in previous years, two Venezuelan union federations organized competing demonstrations in support of the May 1 International Workers’ Day. While the pro-government demonstration attracted more marchers, it appeared more divided than the smaller anti-Chavez demonstration.

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Venezuela: 20% Minimum Salary Raise, Withdrawal from World Bank and IMF

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez announced yesterday that the country’s minimum wage would be raised by 20%, to $286 per month, and that Venezuela would withdraw its membership from the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund. Also, Chavez said that by 2010 the Venezuelan work week will be lowered from 44 to 36 hours.

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ALBA Summit Creates New Model for Latin American Integration

The Fifth Summit of the Bolivarian Alternative for the Americas (ALBA) finished Sunday with important agreements to form a new model of integration for Latin America. Heads of state from Bolivia, Nicaragua, Cuba, and Haiti left Venezuela today after signing several strategic agreements and establishing a formal organizational structure for ALBA.

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5th ALBA Summit in Venezuela Strengthens Regional Integration

With an eye toward the integration and development of their countries, the leaders of Bolivia, Cuba, Venezuela, Nicaragua, and Haiti met this weekend in Venezuela for the 5th ALBA Summit. Among the many proposals, Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez proposed the extension of the Venezuelan health and education programs to all the nations of ALBA, as well as supplying all of their energy needs.

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Oil Companies Give Venezuela Control

Four major oil companies on Wednesday agreed to cede control of Venezuela's last remaining privately run oil projects to President Hugo Chavez's government, but ConocoPhillips resisted, prompting warnings that its fields could be taken over outright.

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Venezuelan TV Channel Case to Go Before the OAS Human Rights Court

The Inter-American Human Rights Commission of the Organization of American States (OAS) accused the Venezuelan government of "human rights violations" in the case of the private television channel RCTV. The case will now go before the Inter-American Human Rights Court, reported RCTV yesterday.

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Poll: Chavez Approval 65%, Despite 70% Rejection of TV Channel’s Non-Renewal

President Chavez’s performance in office continues to be viewed positively by nearly two-thirds of the population, despite a 70% rejection of the non-renewal of the TV broadcast license of RCTV, according to a poll conducted in March. Also, a new Latinobarometro poll finds that Latin Americans view Venezuela as the friendliest country in the Americas.

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Venezuelan Government and Opposition Take TV Case to EU

The General Director of the private TV channel RCTV, Marcel Granier, along with leaders of the political party Primero Justicia, met with the European Parliament Tuesday to protest the Venezuelan government's decision to not renew RCTV's broadcast license. The Venezuelan Ambassador to the European Union assured that the Venezuelan government would respond.

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Venezuelan Opposition Marches in Support of RCTV

Thousands of people marched in Caracas on Saturday in support of the private television channel RCTV, whose broadcast license the Chavez government has refused to renew. Chávez affirmed on Sunday that he would not give in to national or international pressure to renew the license and would never change his decision.

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Non-Aligned Countries Condem Release of Terrorist Luis Posada by US Court

The Non-Aligned Movement, an international organization grouping more than 100 states, expressed "great concern" over the release by a U.S. judge of Luis Posada Carriles, a Cuban-born Venezuelan citizen convicted in the bombing of a Cuban airliner.

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U.S. Releases Cuban Bombing Suspect, Angers Venezuela & Cuba

A 79-year-old anti-Castro Cuban exile and former C.I.A. operative linked to the bombing of a Cuban airliner was released on bail yesterday and immediately returned to Miami to await trial on immigration fraud charges.

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Formation of the United Socialist Party of Venezuela Moves Forward

Venezuela President Hugo Chávez took another step on Thursday in the formation of the Unified Socialist Party of Venezuela (PSUV). The President presided over the swearing in of thousands of new "promoters" of the party at an event in Caracas.

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Chile and Venezuela Strengthen Unity

With the official visit of Chilean President Michelle Bachelet to Venezuela on Wednesday, the two countries signed several agreements of cooperation in different areas. The meeting signaled a lowering of tensions between the two, due to the Chilean Senate's recent condemnation of Venezuela's non-renewal of a TV license.

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Leaders Meet in Venezuela for First South American Energy Summit

In the spirit of integration, 10 presidents of South America met this Monday and Tuesday at the first South American Energy Summit to design an energy strategy for the region. The leaders met on the Venezuelan island of Margarita.

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Brazil To Join Bank of the South

Brazil decided to join the Bank of the South, a joint project between Venezuela and Argentina to create a development fund for Latin America. Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez applauded the decision on his TV show last Sunday.

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