The health of Venezuela’s President Hugo Chavez continues to cause uncertainty. Speculation rests on whether he will be fit enough to take office and will his appointed successor, Nicolas Maduro, be up to the task of leading the left-wing regime which Mr Chavez created and has run for 14 years.

SEVERE respiratory problems following cancer surgery in Cuba are likely to delay the inauguration of Venezuela’s Hugo Chavez for his fourth term as president.

Mr Chavez, 58, is due to be inaugurated on January 10, 2013, but he has not been seen in public for four weeks. He underwent his fourth cancer operation in 18 months on December 11, 2012.

The ...

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Dr. Joseph S. Tulchin
The second problem that will bedevil Mr Maduro in his efforts to govern after Mr Chavez is that there are serious fissures in the Chavista alliance, which only the powerful, popular leader could bridge or diminish
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