(CARACAS, Venezuela) — Speaking after a Mass for President Hugo Chavez on Friday, Venezuelan Vice President Nicolas Maduro shed some light on Chavez’ health.
Maduro told reporters that Chavez is battling for his life, according to the BBC. Maduro added that the president was undergoing “complementary treatments” in the form of chemotherapy.
Speculation had mounted regarding the health of the Venezuelan president, but few specifics had been given.
Chavez has not been seen in public since he had surgery in Cuba in December for an unspecified cancer that is believed to be in his pelvic region. There were reports that Chavez suffered from a severe respiratory infection following his treatment in Cuba.
Maduro has been selected by Chavez as his preferred successor. According to the BBC, if the president is not able to return to office, Venezuela is constitutionally required to hold an election within 30 days.
The 58-year-old president, who won re-election in October, has held that office for 14 years. Chavez had previously reported undergoing radiation therapy and chemotherapy.
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Andreas Preuss, CNN
Susan Scutti, CNN