Hugo Chavez is running for a third term as President of Venezuela, but reports say he is unlikely to live longer than another year.
The Daily Mail reports that Chavez, 56, who is stricken with cancer of the prostrate and colon, has refused necessary treatment since October, opting for smaller doses instead. He allegedly wants to devote his time to his run for President in October.
But medical insiders have said Chavez will be lucky to live another few months despite his repeated public showings.
One claim by Veja, a Brazilian magazine, says that Chavez had a botched operation that resulted in the Cancer spreading.
Another claim by medical insiders say Chavez had three more chemo sessions that had in no way helped treat the cancer.
If the claims are true of the ill Venezuelan leader, what could it mean for Washington-Caracas relations?
The United States and Venezuela have had a strained relationship with one another under the leadership of Chavez and since 2010 have had no ambassadors. Venezuela is one of the major suppliers of oil to the United States.
It wasn’t until Chavez became President in 1999 that the relationship became increasingly strained. Chavez has openly criticized United States trading policies. Although the United States is Venezuela’s top trading partner, Chavez has openly reached out to American enemies, including Iran and Cuba.
According to a report by Reuters, he said former Libyan Dictator Muammar Gaddafi was a martyr and was unjustifiably killed.
“We shall remember Gaddafi our whole lives as a great fighter, a revolutionary and a martyr,” he said.
A December Fox News report said Iran had billion dollar economic ties with several South American leaders including Evo Morales of Bolivia and President Daniel Ortega of Nicaragua. The report said in Venezuela alone, Iran claimed to have signed 70 joint venture deals valued at $17 billion.
Chavez continues to make decisions not partial to the U.S or even Venezuela. According to an AFP report, Venezuela recalled its U.S. consular staff in Miami, citing they faced “grave and imminent danger” following Chavez’s announcement that the Miami consulate would close. He made the announcement after the Jan. 6 expulsion of the consul general Livia Acosta.
Opponents say around 200,000 Venezuelans will no longer receive consular services, making registering to vote in Venezuela’s Presidential election difficult.
In November, Foxnews.com reported Chavez’s personal surgeon said his condition was not good.
"When I say this, I mean that he has no more than two years to live," he added.