CARACAS, Jan. 16 (Xinhua) -- Venezuela's President Hugo Chavez, who is recovering in Havana due to cancer surgery, thanked the country's National Armed Forces for their loyalty, Vice President Nicolas Maduro said Wednesday.
During an event with the military, Maduro said that last Monday Chavez told Jorge Arreaza, Minister of Science and Technology and his son in law, that he was very glad and thankful for the military's "loyalty", as well as for the performance of all his cabinet, congressmen and elected governors.
Maduro said Chavez "feels a great happiness and told us to pass on to the armed forces, from the bottom of his heart, all his gratitude for so much loyalty from you toward him, a humble soldier of the country."
Chavez, who was reelected in last October, was unable to attend his inauguration on Jan. 10.
The postponement of Chavez's inauguration was upheld last week by the Supreme Court of Justice (TSJ) and now has the blessing of the military, Defense Minister Diego Molero said.
"We are fully convinced that the TSJ's verdict, in accordance with the terms of article 335 of the (Constitution), is founded on the principle of the continuity of public authority and the preservation of the people's will," said Molero.
"Now more than ever," the military pledges its "subordination and unconditional loyalty to Hugo Chavez," said Molero.