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Venezuela Dismisses U.S. State Department Report on Terrorism as “Political”

Venezuela's Ambassador to the U.S., Bernardo Alvarez (Archive)

Venezuela’s Ambassador to the U.S., Bernardo Alvarez Herrera, told CNN yesterday that the just released U.S. State Department report on terrorism is "mostly motivated by political disagreements" with Venezuela.

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United Socialist Party of Venezuela Expels 4 for Launching Regional Candidacies

PSUV Vice-Prsident alberto Müller Rojas (Archive).
The United Socialist Party of Venezuela (PSUV) expelled four prominent members who launched their candidacies for the upcoming state and local elections without being selected according to party rules, PSUV Vice President Alberto Müller Rojas announced Tuesday.

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Electricity Restored After Massive Blackout in Half of Venezuela

Power outage caused massive trafic jams in Venezuela's capital of Caracas. (El Universal)
A forest fire near a major power distributor in Venezuela’s Guarico state was the principal cause of a massive power outage that affected 17 of Venezuela’s 23 states for a day, the Venezuelan Energy and Petroleum Minister, Rafael Ramirez, announced Wednesday afternoon.

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Venezuela to Expropriate Steelmaker if Indemnity Not Resolved

If a “just” price is not agreed upon this Tuesday for the nationalization of the Sidor steel plant, Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez will sign a presidential decree expropriating the company, Chávez declared on his weekly Sunday talk show Aló Presidente.

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Venezuela Will Not be Affected by Food Crisis Says Chavez

President Chavez talks with a resident of the central coastal village of Chuao on Sunday (Juan Carlos Solórzano)
Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez assured that Venezuela will not be affected by the world food crisis on his weekly talk show Aló Presidente on Sunday. Chavez discussed the current food crisis and explained his government’s agricultural polices that have increased Venezuelan food production.

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Governor Bill Richardson Meets Chavez in Venezuela

New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson met with President Hugo Chavez at the presidential palace in Caracas, Venezuela (MinCI)
Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez met with New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson to discuss a proposal for the release of three U.S. citizens held by the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC), at Miraflores President Palace on Saturday.

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Chávez Increases Corn Prices, Announces Shift From Oil to Food in Venezuela

President Chavez drives a tractor during his announcement about the increase in Venezuelan food production. (Foto: Feliciano Sequera)
The president of Venezuela, Hugo Chávez, announced Thursday that the regulated prices of corn and sorghum will be raised by 30% and that a new Socialist Agricultural Development Fund (FONDAS) has been launched to promote national food production.

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Chavez Swears In New Venezuelan Minister for Women’s Affairs

Newly appointed Minister of Women's Affairs, Maria Leon with President Hugo Chavez (ABN)
Life long fighter for women’s rights and former Communist Party member, María León, was sworn in by Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, as the first minister for the newly created Ministry of Women’s Affairs on Thursday.

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Venezuelan Governor of Guarico State Accused of Assaulting a Mayor

Guarico state governor Eduardo Manuitt (VTV/Archive)
Venezuela’s Attorney General, Luisa Ortega Diaz, filed a petition with the country’s Supreme Court last Tuesday, to allow her to prosecute the governor of the state of Guarico, Eduardo Manuitt, who has been accused of starting a fistfight against a Mayor.

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Venezuelan Opposition Student Leader to Receive $500,000 Award from U.S. NGO

Venezuelan opposition student leader Yon Goicoechea to receive $500,000 Milton Friedman award from the libertarian Cato Institute.
The libertarian, U.S.-based Cato Institute awarded the $500,000 Milton Friedman Prize for Advancing Liberty to Venezuelan opposition student leader Yon Goicoechea for his leadership in recent student protests. Critics say the award is a new source of opposition funding.

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ALBA Summit in Venezuela Responds to World Food Crisis and Bolivian Crisis

The presidents of (from right to left) Bolivia, Venezuela, Nicaragua, and the Vice President of Cuba met in Caracas Wednesday morning to formulate a response to the world food crisis and discuss the political crisis in Bolivia. (Marcelo García/MinCI)
Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez convened an extraordinary meeting of member nations of the Bolivarian Alternative for the Americas (ALBA) in Caracas early Wednesday morning to discuss the world food crisis and the political crisis in eastern Bolivia.

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Prisoner Rights Restored Following Venezuelan Supreme Court Decision

The President of the Venezuelan Supreme Tribunal of Justice, Luisa Estela Morales (VTV)
Hunger striking prisoners in Venezuela obtained a legal tool to facilitate their reinsertion in society on Monday after the Supreme Court approved an injunction that could lead to a ruling that key articles of the penal code are unconstitutional.

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Venezuelan Oil Co. to Challenge Asset Freeze in Holland

Venezuelan Energy Minister Rafael Ramirez (MINCI)
Venezuela expects to appear in court in the Netherlands before the end of the month in order to challenge an asset freeze obtained by the world’s largest oil company, ExxonMobil Corp against state oil company Petroleos de Venezuela, S.A.

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Venezuela’s Chavez Congratulates Paraguay’s New President Lugo

Former Bishop Fernando Lugo salutes to supporters during his first campaign appearance for the presidency of Paraguay (EFE).
Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez congratulated Paraguay's President-elect, the progressive former bishop, Fernando Lugo, on his historic victory on Sunday night. Chavez also denied accusations of Venezuelan interference in the election, calling these expressions of fear.

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Negotiation of Steel Plant Nationalization Continues in Venezuela

The Venezuelan government and Argentine steel company Ternium formed a joint commission in Caracas Thursday to negotiate indemnity for the nationalization of Ternium Sidor, which is controlled by the Argentine conglomerate Techint and is the largest steel company in Latin America.

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