[Updated at 11:24 a.m. ET] Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez is temporarily having difficulty speaking following a procedure in which doctors inserted a tracheal tube, Venezuela's communications minister said Friday.
Chavez is going through a difficult recovery period following his recent cancer surgery, Communications Minister Ernesto Villegas said at a news conference. Villegas displayed a picture of Chavez in his hospital bed surrounded by his children.
Chavez hasn't appeared in public or on national television since he went to Cuba for cancer surgery in December.
Editor's Note: After 19 months of incessant violence, the Syrian government has agreed to a cease-fire during the four-day Eid al-Adha holiday, which begins Friday, special envoy Lakhdar Brahimi said. He added that some rebels also "agreed to the principle" of a cease-fire. But whether the words lead to any kind of peace remains uncertain. Here are the latest developments:
[Updated 1:52 p.m.] At least 124 people have been killed today in Syria, including 70 in Damascus and its suburbs, the opposition Local Coordination Committees of Syria said.
The opposition and the Syrian government are blaming each other for a massacre in the Damascus suburb Douma. "At least one massacre is perpetrated almost every day across the country where many men, women and children are being slaughtered; all innocent civilians killed in their own homes and in cold blood," the LCC said.
Editor's Note: Since the assassination last week of Lebanon's intelligence chief, Brig. Gen. Wissam al-Hassan, sporadic fighting has erupted across Lebanon, threatening to plunge the country into chaos and raising fears that it could be drawn into the bloody 19-month-old civil war in neighboring Syria. It's a complicated situation with several key players. Here are the latest developments for Tuesday:
[Update 6:20 a.m. ET] Lebanon’s Interior Minister Marwan Charbel says the discovery that the car bomb was placed in a stolen Toyota RAV 4 could result in leads that would help the investigation.
[Update 6:15 a.m. ET] Prime Minister Najib Mikati signs a declaration referring al-Hassan's assassination the nation's Judicial Council. He says the process needs to move faster.
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