Chavez in Venezuela says chemo finished successfully

Reuters News
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Posted: Sep 23, 2011 12:49 AM
Chavez in Venezuela says chemo finished successfully

CARACAS (Reuters) - Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez returned home on Thursday saying a fourth and final session of chemotherapy in Cuba had been successful.

Wearing a blue and white tracksuit, the 57-year-old socialist leader chatted with government officials and then gave a speech after his plane landed at Caracas's Maiquetia International Airport.

"The four sessions of chemotherapy have been highly successful," he said in comments carried live on state TV.

"Successful results, satisfactory results, all the vital signals ... very positive. We can say, thanks to these results, that we have finished the chemotherapy cycle."

Before traveling to Cuba he said his fourth round of chemotherapy would probably be his last.

The former soldier has led South America's biggest oil exporter since 1999 and wants to stay in office until at least 2025 to consolidate his self-styled leftist "revolution."

Chavez plans to run for another six-year term in the October, 2012, election. In June he underwent surgery in Cuba to remove a baseball-sized tumor, throwing added uncertainty into Venezuela's upcoming political season.

(Reporting by Daniel Wallis; Editing by Vicki Allen)