President Chávez launched its first tweet at midnight

Caracas, May 28. ABN.- Tal como lo había prometido, el presidente de la República, Hugo Chávez Frías, escribió cerca de la medianoche de este martes su primer mensaje en la popular red social Twitter. ABN .- As promised, the President of the Republic, Hugo Chávez Frías, wrote about midnight on Tuesday its first message on the popular social network Twitter.

“Epa, ¿qué tal? “Hey, how are you? Aparecí como lo dije: a la medianoche. Appeared as I said at midnight. Pa’ Brasil me voy, y muy contento a trabajar por Venezuela. Pa ‘Brasil I go, and very happy to work in Venezuela. Venceremos”, señala el primer “tweet” del mandatario venezolano. Venceremos, “the first” tweet “the Venezuelan leader.
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Poverty in Venezuela fell from 70% in 1996 to 23% in 2009

Thanks to the policies of the Bolivarian Government poverty in Venezuela fell to 23% in 2009 from 70.3% in the second half of 1996 accompanied by 40% of extreme poverty and a record inflation rate of 103%.

These figures were presented by the President of the Venezuelan National Statistics Office (INE), Elias Eljuri, in the TV program “Between Jornalists” broadcast on the private TV channel Televen.

Eljuri explained that poverty in Venezuela which reached 55% and extreme poverty 25% after the oil industry sabotage orchestrated by the right wing opposition in an attempt to overthrow the Hugo Chávez government, has been falling steadily. It is currently 23% in total with 6% being qualified as extreme poverty. The calculation is based on international standards which take income into account as the overriding factor.

“Many of these opposition politicians and intellectuals seem to forget that they took inflation to over 100% and poverty to over 70% when they were in power,” Eljuri commented. He defended the validity of the INE’s statistics which are frequently questioned by the opposition.

He emphasized that the Gini Index of inequality was the lowest in Latin America which descended from 0.49 to 0.39 in 2009. Now, the richest 20% control 46% of the wealth compared to 54% in 1998.

“The richest 20% still control a large chunk of the country’s wealth but this is a steady change in favor of the vast majority of Venezuelans”, Eljuri added …

“We are still not satisfied with this wealth distribution and the only way to change this is by implementing deep structural changes in the economy which President Chávez is currently undertaking.”

Despite opposition studies which always show that poverty is son the rise Eljuri concluded by saying that the INE figures are fully supported as being transparent and objective by the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean as well as by the World Bank.

Colombia’s US military pact challenged in court

Colombia‘s Constitutional Court is to review a treaty that gives US forces access to Colombian military bases, following a legal challenge of its unconstitutionality.

The lawsuit brought by a legal group called “Jose Alvear Restrepo,” argue that the October 2009 military accord is invalid since it was signed by the government of President Alvaro Uribe without a prior discussion in Congress, as mandated by the constitution.

They, additionally, accuse Uribe of ignoring the advice of the State Council, the highest court on administrative matters, which has also urged him to allow the congress take up the agreement before it was signed.
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Announcing Venezuela’s first and only English Language Newspaper, THE CORREO DEL ORINOCO INTERNATIONAL

Caracas, 22 January 2010 – This Friday, Venezuela celebrates the launching of its first and only English language newspaper, the

Correo del Orinoco International.

While in the past other English-language publications have existed, none remain in circulation today, and no others have been created during the Bolivarian Revolution.

Editor-in-Chief Eva Golinger explained,

“This will be the first newspaper of its kind in Venezuela. We will produce news and information for an international audience, but from the Venezuelan perspective. Most of the news that’s out there in English comes from international news agencies that report with a biased perspective and tend to ignore important human interest stories that paint a positive picture of the Hugo Chávez government.”

“Our most important mission is to combat the massive media manipulation and information blockade against Venezuela and to inform the international community about many incredible events taking place daily inside Venezuela that rarely receive attention from the corporate media”.

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Venezuela writes off Haiti’s debt

President Hugo Rafael Chávez Frías on Monday said that Petrocaribe, Venezuela‘s regional energy alliance, will forgive quake-stricken Haiti‘s debt, AFP reported.

Haiti’s debt with Venezuela is USD 295 million, about one-third of its global foreign debt of USD 1 billion, according to International Monetary Fund figures.

“Haiti has no debt with Venezuela — on the contrary, it is Venezuela that has a historic debt with Haiti,” Chavez said as he made the announcement.

Chavez was referring to the support that Haiti — which obtained its independence from France in 1804 — gave Venezuelan independence leader Simón José Antonio de la Santísima Trinidad Bolívar Palacios y Blanco, commonly known as Simón Bolívar, in 1815 and 1816 in his quest to free his country from Spanish colonial rule.

Chavez made the announcement at the closing ceremony of a meeting of foreign ministers from leftist countries with the Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of Our America (ALBAAlianza Bolivariana para los Pueblos de Nuestra América) trade alliance, a Cuba and Venezuela-supported regional common market founded in 2004.

Petrocaribe provides preferential oil pricing for its Caribbean members, with Venezuela picking up 40% of the cost if oil is selling over USD 50 a barrel.

When oil prices are above USD 50, member states will have up to 25 years to pay the bulk of the debt at a one percent interest rate, with two years grace.

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Venezuelan President Chavez’s Popularity Steady at 60%

According to a study carried out by the Venezuelan Institute of Data Analysis (IVAD), Venezuelan president Hugo Rafael Chávez Frías‘s approval has dropped slightly, to 60.3%, from 62.4% last October.IVAD performed the study from 12 to 20 December, interviewing 1,200 people directly in their homes. IVAD selected the interviewees at random but also reflecting a range of regions and social groups in Venezuela.

To the question, “How do you rate Hugo Chavez’s management as president of Venezuela?,” 38.7% said “bad” and 60.5% said “good”. The poll also confirmed that Chavez’s party, the United Socialist Party of Venezuela (PSUV – Partido Socialista Unido de Venezuela), continues to be the most popular party.

The poll comes as PSUV, opposition and other party leaders prepare for an election campaign year, where all positions in the National Assembly will be up for election in September.

In May 2008 an IVAD poll said Chavez had an approval rating of 68.8%, and in October last year, 62.4%. IVAD polls tend to reflect greater support for the president than polls by opposition polling agencies.

Venezuelan Analysis

Drug Smuggling At Costa Rica’s Main Airport Up 63%

Perhaps it is due to the economic crisis or just a fast way to get rich, as many more this past year have decided to take the chance and smuggle drugs out of Costa Rica by was of the country’s major airport, the Juan Santamaría International Airport (Aeropuerto Internacional Juan Santamaría), in San José.

The Policía de Control de Drogas (PCD) – drug enforcement police – reports that drug smuggling at the airport was up 63% in 2009 over 2008, confiscating some 37% more cocaine than the previous year.

The majority the 35 “burros” detained in 2008 were Europeans.

During the period of January 1 to December 31, the PCD reports confiscating 88 kilos of cocaine at the Santamaría, however, the haul for 2009 was 209 kilos.

The PCD attributes the higher level of detections to better surveillance at the airport, with the support of some 61 officers of the Policía Aeroportuaria (airport police) and the Fuerza Pública (regular police) that took the time to follow up on suspected passengers.

Most of the detainees were detected moments before they were ready to board their flight, much to do with being too nervous in the eyes of the police.

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