NEW PICTURES HAVE emerged of Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez in Cuba with Fidel Castro as speculation continues about the state of Chavez’s health.
Not much has been seen or heard from Chavez since he had an emergency operation on an abscess in Cuba on 10 June.
Speculation has mounted about the state of his health and his future as president of the South American country as a result.
It is unusual for Chavez to remain out of the public eye for so long having previously appeared on Venezuelan television on a regular basis. He presents the show Aló Presidente, a largely unscripted talk show where Chavez discusses the issues of the day often lasting many hours.
In images broadcast on Cuban state TV, which says they were taken on Tuesday, the self-proclaimed socialist revolutionary is seen chatting to his Cuban counterpart Fidel Castro in the grounds of the hospital where Chavez had his operation, according to BBC News.
Chavez is dressed in a colourful Venezuelan flag tracksuit as the two men are shown both standing and sitting down whilst talking. Debate has been raging in Venezuela as to the whereabouts of its leader.
After seeing the video, Venezuelan Information Minister Andres Izarra told AFP:
A picture says more than 1,000 words. We can see him there, very dynamic. We can see that he is recovering.
Vice president Elias Jaua also insisted that Chavez remained very much in charge and there had been no transfer of power in his absence .
Chavez will seek a third term as the elected president of Venezuela next year.