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Chavez says he wants to be Obama’s friend

Trinidad and Tobago (West Indies), Apr.18 (ANI): Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez has said that he would like to be good friends with US President Barack Obama, suggesting possibilities of an iminent thaw in hostile relations between the two countries.

According to Fox News, Chavez said: “I’d like to be your friend,” while Obama reportedly expressed his thanks, though this couldn’t immediately be confirmed.

Photos released by the Venezuelan government show Obama clasping Chavez’s hand and smiling broadly.

A senior White House official said the encounter came before the summit’s opening ceremonies during a meeting with the heads of state. Obama talked to many of the 25 or so leaders who were there at the time. At one point, he walked across the room and introduced himself to Chavez.

Chavez, the leftist Venezuelan president, has been an outspoken critic of the United States, and in particular former President George W. Bush, whom Chavez notoriously once called the “diablo,” or devil. (ANI)

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