Chavez heir Maduro says 'revolution is united'
BARINAS, Venezuela (AFP) - Mr Nicolas Maduro was speechless when Mr Hugo Chavez first told him he may have to carry on the Venezuelan leftist leader's legacy, but he now insists the "revolution is united" behind him.
The acting president, a veteran of Chavez's inner circle now hoping to succeed him in April 14 elections, described how his mentor handpicked him to lead the so-called "Bolivarian Revolution" in an exclusive interview with AFP.
"I never expected this. Never. But it was absolutely moving and surprising that a leader you love, and who you have always been loyal to, at one moment says: 'Look, I am going for an operation and there are three scenarios.
"One is that the operation does not succeed, the second is that it leaves me very frail, and in those two cases it is your turn. You must take charge,'" Mr Maduro said in a campaign-trail interview in the western city of Barinas.