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Venezuela's Chavez to Review Ties With Spain

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez says he is reviewing ties with Spain, in light of a public spat with Spain's King Juan Carlos in which the monarch told Mr. Chavez to "shut up."

President Chavez said Wednesday in a televised interview that although he does not want to damage relations with Spain, he is conducting a detailed review of political, diplomatic and economic ties with the country.

The dispute started last week during an Ibero-American summit of Spanish and Portuguese-speaking leaders in Santiago, Chile. At Saturday's closing session, Mr. Chavez tried repeatedly to interrupt a speech by Spanish Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero. That is when King Juan Carlos turned to Mr. Chavez and tried to silence him.

Mr. Zapatero was criticizing Mr. Chavez for calling former Spanish Prime Minister Jose Maria Aznar a fascist.

The Venezuelan leader has suggested King Juan Carlos had prior knowledge of a 2002 coup in Venezuela.

Mr. Chavez says Spain's ambassador showed support for the coup plotters who ousted him for two days in 2002. Mr. Chavez says he thought the ambassador had acted with the king's approval.

Separately, Mr. Chavez said Tuesday that while Spain has many investments in Venezuela, the South American country does not need them. Spanish Foreign Minister Miguel Angel Moratinos has said Spain is hoping for a swift resolution to the dispute.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP and Reuters.