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Venezuela to beef up security after al Qaeda threat

Venezuela's defense minister said Thursday that the nation would reinforce security measures after a branch of al Qaeda called for attacks on suppliers of oil to the United States.

Venezuela provides around 11 percent of U.S. oil imports despite diplomatic tensions between Caracas and Washington over leftist President Hugo Chavez's self-styled socialist revolution.

Gen. Raul Baduel told reporters that security and intelligence agencies would "take actions and implement previously established security plans, but reinforce them with the goal of guaranteeing security."

He called for calm and said Chavez would provide further instructions about how to deal with the threat.

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