CARACAS - Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez is still suffering from a lung infection that has hindered his breathing as he battles to recover from Dec. 11 cancer surgery, the government said on Thursday.

"Commander Chavez has faced complications as a result of a severe lung infection," Information Minister Ernesto Villegas said, reading the latest official update on the president's condition in a hospital in Cuba.

"This infection has caused a breathing insufficiency that requires Commander Chavez to strictly comply with medical treatment," the communique added, giving no further details.

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