News of Hugo Chávez's mysterious cancer diagnosis has Miami's exile community buzzing over the possibility that the Venezuelan president, and one of Fidel Castro's biggest allies, will not be in office much longer. In an interview today with the BCC, however, Chávez admitted he might need further chemotherapy but still intends to run for re-election in 2012.
"I had a big, big tumour," Chavez told the BBC. "When I saw that image, I said, 'My God, it's a baseball."'
"I'm in the second stage of the disease, [going through] an organ-by-organ assessment and other factors. I mustn't give more details."
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Chávez flew to Cuba in June with little notice and announced only after undergoing surgery that he was battling cancer. He will not specify what type of cancer.
Chávez has cut his workload since returning to Venezuela July 4, but he has made public appearances and was shown on national TV doing stretching exercises (that must have been a sight).
He acknowledges to the BBC that he might need further chemotherapy, but he still plans to seek another term in the 2012 election (or "elections" if you must). That's the official line at this point anyway.