Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez has not said if he will attend this weekend's Summit of the Americas in Cartagena, Colombia.
Chavez is currently undergoing treatment for an undisclosed form of abdominal cancer, and his ministers say that his appearance at the sixth meeting of the Organization of American States will depend on his health.
“Right now the president is dedicated to his treatment and recovery with a lot of energy and dedication,” Foreign Minister Nicolas Maduro told reporters in Quito on Thursday.
“His health is progressing positively and everything will depend on what he decides.”
Chavez returned from Cuba on Wednesday, where he has been receiving radiation therapy since March. So far, the Venezuelan leader has gone through three of what he hopes will be five rounds of radiation.
Thanks to his often flamboyant rhetoric, Chavez has been a focal point of past America Summits. Chavez is also the founder of the Bolivarian Alternative for the People of Our Americas, or ALBA by its Spanish acronym, a group of eight Latin American countries with leftist governments established as a counterweight to the United States-backed Free Trade Area of the Americas .
Colombia, the meeting's host, is confident that Chavez will attend, and Colombian Foreign Minister Maria Angela Holguin thinks that Chavez's appearance would be a show of strength, according to Reuters.
The information that we have is that he will attend, Holguin said in a press conference.
He almost certainly won't sleep in Cartagena. It would be nice for us if he could stay a night. Most certainly it is complicated given the treatment he is receiving.