HAVANA (Reuters) – Although long expected, President Barack Obama’s order on Friday to further loosen restrictions on U.S. travel and remittances to Cuba signals a small tentative thaw in relations.
Along with easing curbs on academic, cultural and religious exchanges with Cuba put in place by former President George W. Bush’s administration, Friday’s announcement will make it easier for U.S. citizens to send cash remittances to the Caribbean island.
CARACAS, Jan 3 (Reuters) – A volatile political scene since
parliament gave President Hugo Chavez the power to rule by
decree, jockeying ahead of the next presidential election, and
a weak economy are risks to watch in Venezuela in 2011.
CHAVEZ DECREE RULE UNTIL MID-2012
Chavez has stirred up Venezuelan politics and infuriated
opponents by taking on special fast-track decree powers for the
next 18 months [ID:nVEDECREES].
CARACAS (Reuters) – Venezuela’s parliament gave President Hugo Chavez decree powers for 18 months on Friday, outraging opposition parties that accused him of turning South America’s biggest oil producer into a dictatorship.
The move consolidated the firebrand socialist leader’s hold on power after nearly 12 years in office, and raised the prospect of a fresh wave of nationalizations as the former paratrooper seeks to entrench his self-styled “revolution.”
CARACAS, Dec 17 (Reuters) – Venezuela’s parliament passed a
bill on Friday making it easier for President Hugo Chavez to
nationalize banks and trim their profits, part of a legislative
onslaught to entrench socialism in the oil exporting nation.
Later in the day, the National Assembly is also due to
grant Chavez powers letting him pass laws by decree for a year,
a move criticized by opposition parties and the U.S. State
Department as autocratic. For details see [ID:nN16274240].
CARACAS (Reuters) – President Hugo Chavez’s move to rule by decree in response to Venezuela’s floods shows he is more interested in positioning himself for a 2012 re-election than helping victims, an opposition leader said on Tuesday.
“The government is not bothered by the emergency. It is exploiting the situation to advance a political project,” Henrique Capriles Radonski, governor of a large Venezuelan state, Miranda, that includes part of Caracas, told Reuters.
CARACAS (Reuters) – Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez faced a wave of criticism on Monday over bills lawmakers are readying to tighten rules on the Internet and television, part of a legislative onslaught deepening his leftist revolution.
Chavez has gradually increased restrictions on the economy, opponents and the media during almost 12 years in office and is now rushing through more laws that drive forward his vision of “21st century socialism” in South America’s top oil exporter.
CARACAS, Dec 13 (Reuters) – President Hugo Chavez sought to
outflank Venezuela’s rejuvenated opposition on Monday by vowing
to assume decree powers for up to 18 months in a move bound to
heighten criticism he is stifling democracy.
The charismatic socialist leader and U.S. critic justifies
the measure as an emergency response to floods that have made
130,000 people homeless — but it is also clearly a preemptive
step before a less compliant parliament convenes on Jan. 5.
CARACAS, Dec 13 (Reuters) – Venezuelan President Hugo
Chavez is set to decree a batch of laws after requesting
special powers from parliament to speed up relief efforts for
more than 120,000 people left homeless by rains.
Opponents fear the flamboyant socialist leader will use the
powers to undermine their strength in the South American
nation’s new parliament beginning on Jan. 5. [ID:nN11265079]
CARACAS (Reuters) – Cuban intelligence services directly advise Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez in what a U.S. diplomat called the “Axis of Mischief,” according to a State Department cable released by the WikiLeaks website.
Other releases by the group revealed U.S. anxiety at Chavez’s “coziness” with Iran, and concerns by Venezuelan Jews over what they see as government prejudice against them.
CARACAS, Dec 1 (Reuters) – President Hugo Chavez’s latest
nationalization drive, political tensions in parliament, moves
against the oil industry and the long tail-end of a recession
are all risks to watch in Venezuela in the coming months.
Chavez has nationalized a lot of businesses in Venezuela
and he will nationalize more before the next presidential
election in 2012. After 12 years in office, the former soldier
shows no signs of slowing his drive to recreate Venezuela as a