San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

Venezuela irked by U.S. comments on Chávez

Venezuela complained Wednesday that the United States meddled when it noted a new election must be called in that country if cancer-stricken President Hugo Chávez is deemed too sick to do    his job.

Chávez returned home by surprise Monday after spending two months in Cuba for cancer surgery and treatment.

The State Department said Tuesday the Venezuelan Constitution should be respected if Chávez is deemed incapacitated, in which case new elections must be called.

The Venezuelan Foreign Ministry said those remarks were tantamount to “new and ugly interference by Washington in Venezuela’s domestic affairs.”

Venezuela and the U.S. have frosty relations. Caracas accuses Washington of 21st century imperialism and has irked the U.S. by aligning itself with countries such as Iran, Cuba and Syria.

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