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  Wednesday, October 23, 2019
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The Venezuelan government on Wednesday accused international and domestic media
The Venezuelan government on Wednesday accused international and domestic media of deliberately misinterpreting information on President Hugo Chavez's recent visit to Russia.

Some media reports said Chavez offered to host Russian military bases in Venezuela and to buy $30 billion worth of Russian weaponry in the next four years.

"We are concerned over the distorted coverage of Hugo Chavez's successful visit to Russia," the Ministry of Communication and Information said in a statement.

"These lies, which are spread by global and private Venezuelan media, are part of a continuous imperialist propaganda campaign aimed at harming the image of our country," the ministry said in a statement.

The Venezuelan government has called upon the media to be more responsible in influencing public opinion.

In a telephone interview with VTV state television, Minister of Communication and Information Andres Izarra said several of Chavez's quotes were taken out of context and 'unintentionally misinterpreted."

Asked at a news conference after his talks with the Russian leadership about Venezuela's reaction to "the possible appearance of Russian warships in the Caribbean", Chavez had said: "We will welcome the Russian fleet with flags and a music band as our ally and friend."

Izarra said the president was talking about a possible friendly visit of Russian ships rather than their permanent deployment at naval bases in Venezuela, which becomes "perfectly clear after a thorough study of an official verbatim account of the news conference."

Venezuela's 1999 Constitution prohibits the deployment of foreign military bases in the country.

Hugo Chavez personally dismissed on Tuesday rumors that Venezuela may spend up to $30 billion on purchases of Russian weaponry in the next four years.

"I do not know where these figures are coming from - $30 billion in four years? The amounts [in contracts] differ, it is a dynamic process," he said.


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