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Chavez applauds Rumsfeld's resignation

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez applauds the resignation of Donald Rumsfeld and suggests President Bush should quit as well.

india Updated: Nov 09, 2006 10:11 IST

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez applauded the resignation of US Defence Secretary Donald H Rumsfeld and suggested President George W Bush should quit as well.

Chavez pointed to the strong gains by Democrats in US congressional elections and called it a "reprisal vote" against Bush's policies and the Iraq war. The leftist leader beamed as he read aloud a news report of Rumsfeld's resignation.

"Heads are beginning to roll," Chavez said during a news conference on Wednesday. "It was about time he resigned. The president should resign now."

Following Tuesday's elections, Democrats ascended to power in the House after 12 years in the minority, and were on the brink of taking control in the Senate.

"The Bush administration has fallen democratically. The fall has begun," Chavez said.

"Of course, the citizens of the United States are humans with a conscience. It's a reprisal vote against the war in Iraq, against the corruption" within the Bush administration, said Chavez, whose fierce opposition to Bush is a staple in his fiery speeches.

Rumsfeld, whom Bush plans to replace with former CIA director Robert Gates, has likened Chavez to Hitler, while the Venezuelan leader called Rumsfeld the "Lord of War."

"It looks like the president of the United States took a beating," Chavez said, calling it a vote reflecting public disapproval of some anti-terrorism measures and plans to expand fencing along the US-Mexico border.

First Published: Nov 09, 2006 10:11 IST