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Venezuela Advances Economic Cooperation with Argentina and Ecuador

President Chávez and President Correa celebrate the launch a joint oil project in the Orinoco River Belt Friday.
Advocating South American integration, President Hugo Chávez oversaw the signing of contracts with Argentine firms to construct “Socialist Factories” in Venezuela on Thursday and inaugurated joint oil exploitation in the Orinoco River Belt with Ecuador on Friday.

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Venezuelan Legislature Debates New Law to Nationalize Gasoline Distribution

The state oil company PDVSA would create a transport company to distribute gasoline.
Venezuela's National Assembly completed its first reading of a new law on Wednesday, which would put distribution of fuel back into the hands of the government, in an effort to reduce middleman profits, improve service and working conditions, and prevent smuggling of fuel across the border.

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Venezuelan Government Denies Private Media Rumors Of Possible Media Crackdown

President Chavez taking apart the lies of the private media. (VTV)
Referring to recent claims that the Venezuelan government both wants to control the media and take over service stations, Venezuela’s President Chavez called the constant lies and distortions by the private media a “desperate campaign.”

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Venezuelan Government Accelerates Yukpa Land Demarcation but Tension Remains

Deisy González Romero, a Yukpa spokesperson, was sent to Caracas in place of Yukpa chiefs who are under death threats from elite landowners. (Avila TV)
Responding to President Chávez’s instructions last Sunday, Venezuelan government officials promised this week to accelerate the granting of land titles to Yukpa indigenous communities who have occupied private estates to demand their constitutional right to ancestral lands.

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Honduras Joins Venezuela in Bolivarian Alternative Trade Group ALBA

Monday, Honduras became the sixth member of the Bolivarian Alternative for the Americas (ALBA), a regional trade group led by Venezuela and based on cooperation rather than free market principles.

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United Socialist Party of Venezuela Begins Campaign for Regional Elections

Meeting of PSUV delegates in the state of Anzoategui. (Aporrea)
The regional elections campaign of the United Socialist Party of Venezuela (PSUV) officially began on Saturday, when it raised a little over US$ 1 million in campaign funds.

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Chávez Declares Support for Venezuelan Indigenous Occupying Ancestral Lands

A protest sign in support of the Yukpa reads: "Chávez/[Environment Minister] Yubirí: The Yukpa demand the Tizina, Paja, Chiquita, and Ceilan Estates." (ANMCLA)
Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez pledged decisive support Sunday for the Yukpa indigenous people who have occupied 14 large estates in the northwestern state of Zulia to demand legal title to their ancestral lands.

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Venezuela Launches New Anti-Poverty Program

President Chavez drives mayoral candidate Jesse Chacon (standing, center) through the streets of Petare. (Prensa Presidencial)
Venezuela’s President Hugo Chavez officially launched a new anti-poverty program. The anti-poverty program will be known as “April 13 Mission,” named after the day Venezuelans took to the streets in 2002 to demand the return of President Chavez when he was temporarily removed from power in a coup attempt.

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Venezuela Creates “Special Area” for Socialist Development in Orinoco Oil Region

President Chávez delineates the zone designated as a Special Use Area at a meeting with his team of ministers Thursday.
The southern section of Venezuela’s Orinoco Oil Belt region will become a “Special Use Area” where the planned Socialist Development Project of the Orinoco will be administered by an appointed federal authority, Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez told his cabinet ministers on Wednesday.

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Venezuela Close to Steel Co. Indemnity Agreement

Daniel Novegil, a manager of the Argentine-Italian firm Techint, nearly signed a deal Monday to sell half of the steelmaker SIDOR for $1.65 billion to the Venezuelan government, which nationalized the steel plant last April.

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Venezuelan Economy Grows 7.1% in 19th Consecutive Quarter of Growth

Venezuela's quarterly GDP growth, 1998-2008 (Banco Central de Venezuela)
Reflecting the increase in living standards and national production sovereignty, Venezuela’s gross domestic product (GDP) increased by 7.1% in the second quarter of 2008, relative to the same quarter in the previous year.

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Venezuela Concludes Price Negotiations for Cement Nationalizations

Venezuelan Energy and Oil Minister Rafael Ramírez

As the deadline for negotiations of indemnity for Venezuela’s nationalized cement industry passed Monday, the Venezuelan government announced that it had come to agreements with the French cement company Lafarge and Switzerland’s Holcim, but will unilaterally set the price for Mexico’s CEMEX.

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Venezuela Increases Collaboration with Paraguay As Lugo Assumes Presidency

Venezuela's President Chavez and Paraguay's President Lugo embrace during Lugo's inauguration (Prensa Presidencial)
Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez has promised new Paraguayan President Fernando Lugo “all the oil he needs” during a public event on the weekend in Uruguay after Lugo was inaugurated on Friday.

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Venezuela to Launch Its First Satellite from China in November

President Hugo Chávez inspected the sattelite control station in Venezuela's Guárico state Sunday. (Prensa Presidencial)
Venezuela’s first satellite will be launched from Chinese soil on November 1st, President Hugo Chávez announced on his weekly Sunday talk show Aló Presidente, which was broadcast from the satellite control station located at an air base on the vast plains of the state of Guárico, Venezuela.

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Landowners Attack Venezuelan Indigenous Clamoring for Land Rights in Zulia

Cacique Sabino Romero, leader of the occupations of 14 landed estates, victim of repeated assassination attempts by landowners (Aporrea.org)
A Venezuelan indigenous community belonging to the Yukpa ethnic group, which is demanding legal title to its ancestral lands, was attacked last week by hundreds of armed aggressors. According to the Yukpa, the aggressors were hired by elite landowners to evict the indigenous population from land each claim as theirs.

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