Chavez replaces Venezuela's defense chief

March 4, 2009 04:38


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Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez has replaced the South American country's defense chief with one of his trusted allies. Vice President Ramon Carrizalez, a former army colonel, will replace Gen. Gustavo Rangel Briceno as defense minister under a series of changes that Chavez has made to his Cabinet. Information Minister Jesse Chacon announced Tuesday that Chavez also appointed Eduardo Saman, director of Venezuela's consumer protection agency, as commerce minister and Maria Cristina Iglesias as labor minister. The cabinet shuffle comes shortly after voters approved a constitutional amendment that allows all elected officials, including Chavez, to seek indefinite re-election.

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