Concerns growing over Chavez's health
Monday 27 June 2011
Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez's prolonged silence and seclusion in Cuba following surgery there two weeks ago is fuelling speculation about his health.
Government officials have offered repeated assurances that Mr Chavez is recovering well in Havana, but many Venezuelans are wondering if they are getting the true story.
Venezuelans are accustomed to near daily speeches and television appearances by Mr Chavez, who turns 57 next month. Yet nobody has heard him speak since he talked by telephone with Venezuelan state television on 12 June, saying he was recovering from surgery two days earlier for a pelvic abscess. He said tests showed no sign of any "malignant" illness. It is not clear when he will return to Venezuela.
The paucity of information has fed a stream of speculation about the president's condition as well as outlandish gossip on both sides of Venezuela's deep political divide.
Some people suspect he has been diagnosed with life-threatening illness such as prostate or colon cancer while others claim doctors botched liposuction surgery and he suffered an infection.
Authorities have sought to quash such talk but their comments have done little to calm the consternation of Chavez supporters or appease government critics who accuse officials of trying to dupe Venezuelans.
- 1 Nigel Farage: Me vs Russell Brand on Question Time – he's got the chest hair but where are his ideas?
- 2 Harry Potter fans can apply to the Hogwarts-inspired College of Wizardry
- 3 Jessica Chambers: 19-year-old woman 'doused with lighter fluid and burned alive' in the US
- 4 Russell Brand calls Nigel Farage 'poundshop Enoch Powell' in BBC Question Time debate
- 5 Orange Wednesdays are no more
Weather bomb in pictures: Storms cuts power for tens of thousands – and snow is on the way
Jessica Chambers: 19-year-old woman 'doused with lighter fluid and burned alive' in the US
Russell Brand calls Nigel Farage 'poundshop Enoch Powell' in BBC Question Time debate
Russell Brand was rendered speechless on Question Time by this man
Fury at Airbus after it hints the super-jumbo may be mothballed
Disgruntled RBS worker writes hilarious open letter to Russell Brand after anti-capitalist publicity stunt leaves him hungry
Nigel Farage defends Kerry Smith 'ch***y' comment: 'If you are going for a Chinese, what do you say you’re going for?'
Nigel Farage's approval rating hits 'record low' as popularity suffers in wake of Ukip sex scandal
Pakistan school attack live: Taliban kill at least 132 children in 'horrifying' massacre
Sony hack: Angelina Jolie branded 'seriously out of her mind' in further embarrassing leaked email saga
Panic Saturday: 13 million Britons spend £1.2bn – while 13 million others across the country live in poverty unable to afford food
£30000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An exciting opportunity to join...
£30000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: We have an excellent role for a...
Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: An IT Support Analyst is required to join the ...
Excellent Salary: Austen Lloyd: SURREY - An outstanding high level opportunity...