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Bolivia's Morales says Chavez in "very worrisome" state

posted 2 Jan 2013, 14:37 by Sam Mbale   [ updated 2 Jan 2013, 14:39 ]

Bolivian President Evo Morales says Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez's "situation is very worrying", adding he hopes prayer will help "save his life".

COCHCABAMBA, BOLIVIA (JANUARY 02, 2012) (GOVERNMENT TV) - Bolivian President Evo Morales on Wednesday (January 2) said Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez was in a "very worrisome" state.

The Bolivian leader said he hoped his prayers and those of others would help, "save the life" of his close ally and friend who has not been heard from in three weeks since undergoing a gruelling operation in Cuba.

"Well, first, it is very painful. There is an important absence at international events. In ALBA nations as much as in Venezuela, the situation for our brother, President Hugo Chavez, is very worrisome. Hopefully soon he will be joining us, but his situation is very worrying. I spoke with his family. I tried to speak with the vice president which was difficult. But hopefully our prayers and our rites [will help] save the life of our brother President Hugo Chavez," Morales said.

Venezuelan officials have acknowledged the usually garrulous former soldier's health is delicate after his fourth cancer surgery in 18 months, but have offered scant details on his condition.

Vice President Nicolas Maduro, who Chavez last month designated as his heir apparent, on Tuesday said in an interview from Havana that Chavez had recognized the complexity of his post-operative condition.

Chavez suffered unexpected bleeding and a respiratory infection after a six-hour operation on Dec. 11. Terse official statements have said nothing about when he might be expected back or whether his life is in danger.

Chavez's condition is being watched closely by Latin American countries that have benefited from his generous assistance, as well as Wall Street investors who are drawn to Venezuela's lucrative and heavily traded bonds.