14:56 06 March 2013
President Hugo Chavez has lost his battle against cancer and died on Tuesday, 5th March, aged 58. The Venezuelan leader reportedly died at a military hospital in Caracas. Now, the nation will have seven days to mourn the death of their President.
News of his death came via an announcement by Vice-President Nicolas Maduro, who stated on TV that the President had died after suffering with his illness for almost two years.
He said giving the message that “Comandante President Hugo Chavez Frias” had died to Venezuelan citizens was the “hardest and the most tragic of news that we will ever transmit to our people”.
Mr. Chavez’s funeral is expected to take place on Friday, 8th March.
The President had been receiving treatment for cancer since first knowing he had the disease in July 2011. He returned to Venezuela in February after his visit to Cuba for treatment, although no public appearance was made by the leader in 2013.
The Venezuelan people recently protested over this and demanded to have an update concerning Mr. Chavez’s state of health. Photographs of the President in his hospital bed were released however.
Now, there will be unknown answers with regards to the country’s politics, as an election will take place over the next 30 days to choose a new President. It is believed that Mr. Maduro will fill the post until a new leader is decided upon.
The sad news comes after officials confirmed this week that Mr. Chavez’s condition was “very delicate” due to a “new, severe infection” which affected his respiratory system.
Previously the Information Minister Ernesto Villegas said: “There is a worsening of his respiratory function. Related to his depressed immune system there is now a new, severe infection.
“The president has been receiving high-impact chemotherapy, along with other complementary treatments ... his general condition continues to be very delicate.”
Mr. Chavez, a former soldier, won the election in 1998 and rose to power. Venezuela, situated in South America, is made up of 23 states. Its capital city is Caracas, which is also the country’s largest city.
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