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Chavez Reports Alleged Coup Plot 


Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez is reporting a new coup plot against his government, just days before a referendum on allowing him to seek re-election.

In an interview on state Wednesday, Mr. Chavez said some active duty soldiers were arrested after collaborating with a Venezuelan soldier who, he alleged, is on the run in the United States.

He said the troops were trying to "infiltrate" his palace and that they had sent messages to military units in areas governed by the opposition.

The Venezuelan president gave few details about the alleged plot, but said officials had confiscated military weapons, including several different kinds of explosives.

Mr. Chavez was briefly ousted in a 2002 coup and frequently tells of alleged plots to remove him.

The Venezuelan leader is finishing a campaign to amend the country's constitution to allow the president and other politicians to run for re-election as many times as they like. Venezuelans will vote on the issue in a referendum Sunday.

Before regional elections late last year, the president said there was a plot within the Venezuelan military to assassinate him and carry out a coup.


Some information for this report was provided by AFP and Reuters

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