OK, so those rumors flying around Twitter that Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez has been brain dead since last weekend may not be true. But that doesn't mean Chavez is recovering well from his latest bout with cancer.
Venezuela's vice president confirmed this morning that Chavez is in fact "battling for his life."
Vice President Nicolas Madura spoke at length on Venezuelan television last night about Chavez's health as rumors intensified that he was either already dead -- a story reported by CNN Chile based on a former Panamanian ambassador's claims -- or clinging to life.
Maduro confirmed that the latter is true. Although Chavez returned to Caracas in mid-February after months of treatment in Havana, he hasn't been seen in public and is reportedly battling a severe respiratory infection.
"He's battling for his life, for his health, and we are there with him," Maduro said.
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It's the first real confirmation from the government of how serious Chavez's condition has become; previously, the only real news they've released was a carefully posed photo of Chavez in a hospital bed with his daughters by his side.
Maduro, whom Chavez has handpicked as his successor, told viewers the president was struggling because of his devotion to the Bolivarian revolution.
"Our commander is sick because he gave his life for those who don't have anything," he said.