Chavez says U.S. denied visas for his team

Published September 14, 2005 1:08 am

This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2005, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

CARACAS, Venezuela - Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez said Tuesday that U.S. authorities have denied visas to his security team, forcing him to put a hold on his plans to visit New York for this week's U.N. summit.

U.S. officials said visas for Chavez's delegation were not denied.

Chavez said he was still considering whether to go to New York after the visas were denied for his bodyguards and the military chief of his security detail. He accused the U.S. government of attempting to undermine his participation in the U.N. summit, which begins today.

The Venezuelan leader said U.S. authorities had also changed the location where his plane was going land ''at the last minute,'' adding that the move was clear evidence of U.S. ''intervention'' in Venezuela's affairs.

U.S. officials have denied the claims as ridiculous.