Chavez Has Tumor Removed
VP says comadante is doing fine after operation in Cuba
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 29, 2012 4:35 AM CST
A mural of Venezuela's independence hero Simon Bolivar, left, Jesus, center, and Venezuela’s President Hugo Chavez reads in Spanish "I have risen! Homeland, Socialism or Death. We will overcome."    (AP Photo/Ariana Cubillos)
camera-icon View 1 more image

(Newser) – The Venezuelan government ended an information blackout today to announce that Hugo Chavez has had a tumor removed from his pelvis and is recovering in a Cuban hospital. The president "is in good physical condition," his vice president told the National Assembly, prompting cries of "Onward, comadante," the AP reports. Chavez went to Cuba last June to have a baseball-sized tumor removed from the same part of his body.

Chavez is planning to stand for re-election this fall but uncertainty surround the state of his health and he has never disclosed the exact nature of his illness. "They have not said anything different from what was already known: that he has a tumor in the area of the pelvis," an oncologist in neighboring Colombia says. "The pelvis is a large cavity with several organs inside, including the prostate, part of the bladder, part of the colon, so it's difficult to determine in what part the tumor is based. We're left the same as before."