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Chavez mourned by the world

CAROL MARTINDALE, [email protected]

Chavez mourned by the world

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LONDON (AP) — Some marked Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez’s death with tears; others with cheers.
There was deep mourning in Latin America, condolences from Europe and Asia and, from Iran’s president, predictions of great works in the afterlife.
President Barack Obama, meanwhile, focused on “a new chapter” for Venezuela, following 14 years in which Chavez cast himself as a bulwark against U.S. domination.
Chavez, who died Tuesday aged 58, was seen as a hero by some for his socialist programs, his anti-U.S. rhetoric and gifts of cut-rate oil. Others considered him a bully who repressed his opponents.
A teary-eyed Bolivian President Evo Morales, one of Chavez ‘s closest allies and most loyal disciples, declared that ” Chavez is more alive than ever.”
” Chavez will continue to be an inspiration for all peoples who fight for their liberation,” Morales said Tuesday in a televised speech. ” Chavez will always be present in all the regions of the world and all social sectors. Hugo Chavez will always be with us, accompanying us.”
Former London Mayor Ken Livingstone, another left-wing fan of the Latin American strongman, said that Chavez’s ability to shrug off American pressure and weather what he described as a U.S.-backed coup attempt had inspired the entire continent to defy Washington.
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad announced a day of mourning and compared Chavez to a saint, saying he will “return on resurrection day.”
In Cuba, President Raul Castro’s government declared two days of national mourning and ordered flags to fly at half-staff.