Chávez and Castro pictured in discussion at hospital

Venezuela has released photographs of its convalescing president, reportedly taken inside a Cuban hospital. A smiling Hugo Chávez is seen walking in a couple of the pictures, and in others sitting and chatting with his mentor, former Cuban leader Fidel Castro.

Chávez flew to Cuba last week to undergo surgery for removal of what he said was likely a cancerous tumor in the pelvic region.

Last year, the 57-year-old Venezuela leader had surgery and chemotherapy in Havana to remove a cancerous growth from the same area. Chávez later said he was cancer-free.

Chávez has ruled Venezuela for 13 years and is hoping to be re-elected for another six-year term in October. His opponent will be 39-year-old Henrique Capriles who was chosen as the sole opposition candidate in a primary in February.

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