Chavez on mend after pelvic surgery
Venezuela's vice president said Hugo Chavez is recovering quickly after undergoing pelvic surgery in Cuba.
Elias Jaua said Mr Chavez told him during a recent telephone calls that he is experiencing a "clear improvement" following the operation last week.
Mr Jaua did not indicate when Mr Chavez is expected to return to Venezuela.
Opposition leaders claim Mr Chavez's absence requires him to temporarily delegate his duties to a subordinate.
The president's congressional allies voted down a proposal for the leader to temporarily cede his duties.
A pelvic abscess is an accumulation of pus that can have various causes, including infection or complications from surgery.