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Venezuela's Chavez vows to continue Castro's 'struggle' after Cuban leader's death

President Hugo Chavez promised his close friend and ally Fidel Castro on Thursday that he would continue the Cuban leader's decades-long fight against U.S. imperialism once the aging revolutionary icon has passed away.
"Fidel, I assume the commitment of continuing your struggle, your endless battle. I assume it. We, your children, assume it," said Chavez, a former paratroop commander who is steering Venezuela toward socialism.
Since taking office in 1999, Chavez has forged strong ties with communist-led Cuba while emerging as one of Latin America's most outspoken critics of Washington's foreign policy in the region.
Castro, who turns 81 next month, has not been seen in public since emergency intestinal surgery almost a year ago forced him to temporarily cede power to a provisional government headed by his younger brother.
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