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Venezuela's Chavez caught lying about agreement with Vestey Group

By Aleksander Boyd

London 24.10.05 | Hugo Chavez's latest trip to Europe was all about charm. Whenever he went his bonhomie -or as BBC's Robin Lustig coined it the "charming provocateur"- disarmed critics. Europeans weren't treated to his trademark vitriolic revolutionary rethoric but rather to a spectacle of a neocommunist coupster -pretending to be a victim and a saviour- lying his way out of questions with a somewhat pusillanimous disposition. In Galicia, for instance, he said that his administration had "absolute respect" (sic) for private property. Right he is...

To Italy, as customary, he arrived late surrounded by thuggish looking bodyguards who were elbowing people standing in his way to embrace that other most democratic beacon ruling Zimbabwe. In Paris, he treated condescendingly a Colombian journalist who, allegedly, was translating the questions posed by Lustig. He then went on to meet with leftist talebans. Of his 'bilateral' conversations with Kofi Annan, he declared afterwards that Venezuela was the country better positioned to reach the millenium goals. Poverty, unemployment, crime are on the decrease according to his account whereas access to education and health, foreign investment and oil production augmenting. "I can send you the figures if you like" he said to Lustig. But don't hold your breath on that one Robin for his sycophants are yet to fedex evidence of the imminent US invasion -code name "Plan Balboa"- to Ted Koppel...

This morning fellow blogger Miguel Octavio sent a link of Union Radio entitled "Mandatario venezolano anunció acuerdo por tierras con firma británica Vestey" -Venezuelan ruler announced land agreement with England's Vestey group. The article starts with remarks purportedly made by Vestey's representative in Venezuela Agroflora, that allegedly accepted to cede part of the land owned by the company to the Chavez regime. When asked to comment, a Vestey Group spokesman in London said that neither Agroflora nor Vestey group had reached any agreement with either President Chavez or with INTI. The spokesman also expressed that Vestey remains open to reaching an agreement with the Venezuelan government on mutually acceptable terms.

Mind you quite easy for anyone to call the bluffs of Fidelito. The tragedy, for us Venezuelans, is that any man commanding a personal fortune of $+32 billion and exerting absolute control of the world's fifth largest oil producer is perceived as very charming indeed for contracts-needy Europeans or Americans.

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