White House: No Obama-Chavez meeting planned
www.chinaview.cn 2009-04-17 13:25:17   Print

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    PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad and Tobago, April 16 (Xinhua) -- U.S. President Barack Obama has no plan to meet his Venezuelan counterpart Hugo Chavez at the Fifth Summit of the Americas, White House said on Thursday.

    "There's no one-on-one meeting with Mr. Chavez on the schedule," White House spokesman Robert Gibbs told reporters in a briefing in Mexico City, where Obama met with Mexican President Felipe Calderon ahead of his departure for the summit.

    The spokesman, however, did not rule out possibilities of a meeting, saying President Obama might not walk away if Chavez tried to have a private talk. "Every time I've pulled the president aside for a conversation, we've had that conversation, so I assume he would do the same," he said.

    Chavez praised Obama's decision to close the detention facility in U.S. Guantanamo Bay Naval Base in Cuba and described Obama as an improvement over the Bush administration. He has said he hopes to reset relations with the United States at the summit.

    The U.S.-Venezuela relations, which have been tense for nearly a decade, grew increasingly strained under former U.S. President George W. Bush. Venezuela expelled the U.S. ambassador and withdrew its envoy to Washington in September 2008.

    The three-day summit is about to start on April 17 in Trinidad and Tobago's capital Port of Spain.

Editor: Xiong Tong
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