Medvedev wishes Chavez well in cancer treatment

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Russian President Dmitry Medvedev on Sunday called his Venezuelan counterpart Hugo Chavez to wish him well in his cancer treatment, and to announce his foreign minister's visit to Caracas in August, officials here said.

In the telephone conversation, Medvedev wished his leftist South American ally "good health and a speedy recovery."

Chavez assured him he was making a "swift recovery" due to a strict rehabilitation regime, the Venezuelan foreign ministry said in a statement.

Medvedev also used the call to announce his Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov's official two-day visit to Caracas starting August 22.

The two countries have enjoyed enjoyed warm relations in recent years, including burgeoning energy and defense weapons deals,such as the 2007 multi-billion-dollar weaponry deal that included Caracas' purchase of Sukhoi jets.

During nearly a three week long stay in Cuba last month, Chavez underwent surgery to have a cancerous tumor removed.

Chavez has not said exactly what type of cancer he has or if he is still undergoing chemotherapy sessions. Venezuelan officials have said only that it was in his pelvic area, leading some to suggest it could be colon cancer.

© 2011 AFP

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