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Chávez Plays the Drug Card

Friday, April 10, 2009

Citing national security concerns and a need to crack down on drug trafficking, Venezuela's President Hugo Chávez, with the support of leading lawmakers, dispatched federal agents and security forces to take over major seaports and airstrips in four Venezuelan states last week.

Chávez opponents blasted the move as a bid to tighten political control amid plunging oil prices, which have softened the OPEC nation's economy. Three of the ports are in states governed by opposition politicians, and Chávez has suggested that anyone who interferes could face prison. ...

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