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Chavez Denies Rumors of Health Setback


In this photo released by Miraflores Press Office, Venezuela's President Hugo Chavez jokes with a baseball at Miraflores presidential palace in Caracas, Venezuela, September 29, 2011.

In this photo released by Miraflores Press Office, Venezuela's President Hugo Chavez jokes with a baseball at Miraflores presidential palace in Caracas, Venezuela, September 29, 2011.

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez is denying a newspaper report that he had been rushed to the hospital with kidney failure linked to his treatment for an undisclosed form of cancer.

President Chavez issued the denial Thursday, one day after Miami-based Spanish-language newspaper El Nuevo Herald, citing anonymous sources, said the Venezuelan leader had been taken to a military hospital for emergency care. In an interview with Venezuelan state television, Chavez urged Venezuelans to "pay no attention to rumors." Chavez did not specify from where he was calling, but did say he was working at "half-speed" while undergoing therapy.

The Venezuelan leader had a cancerous tumor removed from his pelvic area in Cuba in June. Since then, he has undergone four rounds of chemotherapy, three of those sessions in Cuba.

President Chavez has pledged to run for a new, six-year term in next year's elections.

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

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