Thursday, December 26, 2002

NYTimes -- Brazil Sends Gasoline at Venezuelan's Request

In a show of support for Venezuela's embattled president, Hugo Chávez, the Brazilian government has sent an emergency shipment of 520,000 barrels of gasoline to help relieve shortages caused by a nationwide general strike now in its fourth week, government officials here said today.

Commercial and political ties between the two countries have strengthened considerably since Mr. Chávez took office in February 1999, proclaiming his intent to lead a peaceful social revolution. President Fernando Henrique Cardoso of Brazil approved the gasoline shipment, and there are indications that his successor-elect, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, of the left-wing Workers Party, was also involved in the decision.

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