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Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez's Cancer Reports Put ALBA-Dependent Nicaragua On Alert

LADB Article ID: 78523
Category/Department: Nicaragua
Date: 2012-03-08
By: Benjamin Witte-Lebhar

A huge question mark for Venezuela, President Hugo Chávez’s ongoing health problems are also making waves in Nicaragua, where President Daniel Ortega has good reason to pray for his cross-Caribbean counterpart’s full and speedy recovery. One of the Nicaraguan president’s only international allies, the 57-year-old Chávez has also been a tremendous benefactor in recent years, channeling an estimated US$2 billion Nicaragua’s way since 2007, when Ortega reclaimed the presidency after a 17-year absence from power. With the help of economic assistance from Venezuela, Nicaragua’s overall economy has grown in the past two years by more than 4% annually. Extra-budgetary funds from Venezuela have also bankrolled the president’s signature social programs.

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