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Vladimir Putin congratulated Hugo Chavez on his landslide victory in the Venezuelan referendum
Some details have been reported about the Russian and Venezuelan presidents' meeting in the Kremlin. Vladimir Putin congratulated Hugo Chavez on his landslide victory in the Venezuelan referendum. "This was a landslide victory that defused internal tensions in Venezuela, and we are happy about it and wish you consolidation of the economic and social spheres, the internal political situation and the most positive development," said Putin. "I hope that the Russian-Venezuelan relations will be an essential factor of stabilisation in Venezuela and of our countries' development," the Russian president emphasised. The Russian head of state also noted that he had been to Chile recently where he met many Latin American leaders, and then the Brazilian leaders too. "They all sympathise with your people, and they all asked to convey the warmest congratulations on your victory in the referendum," said Putin. Putin and Chavez addressed each other informally. "We had the opportunity to spend nearly all morning together - at breakfast and at a short session in a narrow format. So we can say that our talks have already started and have been continuing for a few hours in an absolutely informal regime," said Putin. "This is our third visit to Moscow, and we are met with real solidarity here, on your part and on the part of your colleagues. Here in Moscow, we feel at home despite the snow. But it is beautiful," Chavez said in turn. As for the talks, President Putin noted that both energy and other spheres, too, were important for Russia-Venezuela co-operation. Today's meeting is aimed at achieving progress on all issues, said the Russian leader. "Russia and Venezuela are large oil extracting nations. The situation in our energy sectors seriously affects international energy markets. Hence, a lot depends on how responsibly we proceed," said the Russian president
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