CARACAS — Hugo Chávez’s efforts to build an anti-US coalition received a boost on Monday following a visit by Mahmoud Ahmadi-Nejad, Iran’s president, to Venezuela and the signing of trade agreements between the two countries. The two presidents are due to arrive in New York on Tuesday, where both are expected to address the UN General Assembly. Mr Chávez has been lobbying intensively to win a two-year term on the Security Council. Next month’s vote on the seat, which will pit Venezuela against US-backed Guatemala, will be a ‘thermometer reading of how anti-US the member nations of the UN are’, according to Alberto Garrido, a political analyst. Mr Chávez, who supports Iran’s nuclear programme, reiterated with Mr Ahmadi-Nejad their opposition to ‘US imperialism’ and their support for a ‘multipolar’ world order, free of the hegemony of what Mr Ahmadi-Nejad called ‘the tyrants of the world – above all, the Americans’. The two leaders signed 29 bilateral agreements in areas as diverse as petrochemicals, health, mining and agriculture. In a series of international tours this year, the Venezuelan leader has secured support for his Security Council seat candidacy from much of Latin America and Africa, along […]

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