Venezuela's Chavez Predicts 'year Of Tests'

Published January 13, 2012 7:18PM (EST)

CARACAS, Venezuela (AP) — Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez says he expects a "year of tests" as he runs for re-election.

Chavez has been in office for 13 years and is seeking another six-year term in the October vote.

In his annual message to the National Assembly Friday, Chavez told opposition lawmakers that if he loses, he "would be the first in recognizing it."

Opponents criticize Chavez's handling of problems such as rampant violent crime and 27.6 percent inflation.

Hundreds of Chavez's supporters wearing red shirts gathered around the National Assembly and cheered the president as he arrived.

By Salon Staff

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