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Venezuelan state TV airs first video of Chavez since surgery

By the CNN Wire Staff
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Chavez walks with Cuba's Castro
  • The video is the first shown of Hugo Chavez since his June 10 surgery
  • The network says the video was recorded Tuesday during a meeting in Havana
  • It shows Chavez and Fidel Castro looking at Cuba's state-run Granma newspaper
  • Chavez's live appearances came to halt after surgery, fueling speculation

Caracas, Venezuela (CNN) -- Venezuela's state-run television network aired video images Tuesday of President Hugo Chavez meeting with former Cuban leader Fidel Castro.

The network said the video was recorded Tuesday during a meeting in Havana. It is the first video of Chavez that has aired on the network since authorities announced that doctors performed emergency surgery on him in Cuba on June 10.

The video showed Chavez, wearing his trademark track suit, and Castro talking and looking at the state-run Granma newspaper. Venezuela Information Minister Andres Izarra said they were looking at Tuesday's edition of the paper.

Speculation about Chavez's health has surged in media reports and online posts since officials announced that doctors performed surgery on him to treat a pelvic abscess more than two weeks ago.

Chavez has been seen in photos -- pictures of him posing with Fidel Castro and Cuban President Raul Castro were published in state media -- but his normally frequent live television appearances have been absent from Venezuelan airwaves.

Journalist Osmary Hernandez contributed to this report.