Top Venezuelan political and military officials gathered in Caracas Tuesday following word of President Hugo Chavez's deteriorating health.
The constitution calls for snap presidential elections if Chavez dies or falls into an incapacitated state where he can no longer lead the nation. Venezuela's information minister said Monday the president is suffering from a "new and severe" infection that has made it harder for him to breathe.
Meanwhile, Venezuela's vice president says a U.S. military official is being expelled for spying. The Telesur network says the U.S. official had 24 hours to leave the country after allegedly seeking out active duty military officers to carry out destabilizing military activities.
Students who support opposition political groups take part in a demonstration in Caracas Mar. 4, 2013.
The 58-year-old President Chavez is being treated at a Caracas military hospital. The information minister has said the cancer-stricken leader has a "severe infection" and is in delicate condition.
On Saturday, Venezuela's vice president said President Chavez is still in charge of the country and making policy decisions even as he undergoes chemotherapy.
Chavez was admitted to a Caracas hospital last month after spending two months in Cuba, forcing him to miss his January 10 inauguration for another six-year term.
The Venezuelan government has given few details of the president's illness other than saying he has a cancer in his pelvis.
The opposition has accused officials of withholding information about Chavez's condition.