Iran's president makes his first visit to Venezuela on Sunday, seeking to strengthen ties with a government that has become a leading defender of his nation's nuclear ambitions.
President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has said that he and Venezuelan leader Hugo Chavez are like "brothers" in a great global struggle, and Chavez promises to advocate for Iran's nuclear program if he wins a rotating seat on the U.N. Security Council in a vote next month.
Chavez has said Venezuela "will stand together with Iran at all times and under any conditions," accusing the US of planning to invade Iran.
"I ask for full support for the government and the people of Iran in developing their sovereign right to move forward with (nuclear) research," Chavez said at the Havana summit on Thursday. "It's part of the formula of the future - nuclear energy. We aren't talking about atomic bombs."