February 21, 2013 - 09:52 AMT
PanARMENIAN.Net - Bolivian President Evo Morales said Wednesday, Feb 20, that he was unable to meet with his friend and ally Hugo Chavez when he came to the military hospital in Caracas where the Venezuelan president is undergoing unspecified cancer treatment, The Associated Press reports.
Morales had arrived at the hospital on Tuesday night along with Vice President Nicolas Maduro in a convoy of vehicles escorted by troops on motorcycles, and the Bolivian leader left later on without speaking to journalists who were waiting outside the hospital.
"I wasn't able to meet him," Morales said at a news conference at the United Nations. "I was only able to meet the head doctor and his family, but my understanding is that they are very encouraged." Morales added, however, that Chavez has been going through "the most difficult moments in his life" and is still facing serious health problems.
"Now that he's returned to Caracas it's a great relief," Morales said.
Chavez's return to Venezuela from Cuba was announced by the government on Monday after a 10-week stay on the island during which he underwent a fourth cancer-related surgery and treatment for complications including a severe respiratory infection.
The government hasn't released any images of the president since his return, and Chavez's long absence from public view has been stirring renewed speculation about a possible new presidential election if his illness eventually forces him to relinquish power. Chavez hasn't spoken publicly since before his Dec. 11 surgery.
It was the second time that Morales has tried to see Chavez since his latest surgery. The Bolivian leader traveled to Havana in December but later gave few details about the quick trip.
It remains unclear what treatments Chavez is currently receiving, though medical experts say it could be more chemotherapy or other sorts of drug treatments, depending on the type of pelvic cancer he is fighting.