Venezuela's President Denounces U.S. Pressure and
Reaffirms Commitment to Change

April 20, 2004

On April 13, Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez spoke at a mass rally in Caracas to commemorate the failed coup of 2002.

Thousands of Venezuelans cheered as Chavez denounced the U.S. government for organizing the failed coup. Chavez reaffirmed his government's commitment to pursue the path of social reforms, including improving education, health care and the rights of the people generally.

Chavez also said that Venezuela does not recognize the current puppet regime in Haiti which is the product of a U.S.-orchestrated coup.

Chavez also denounced U.S. aggression in Iraq and expressed solidarity with the struggle of the Iraqi people.

He concluded his speech by calling on the people of Venezuela to strengthen their unity and continue the struggle because "we have no other option...we are obliged to win."