The first anniversary of Hugo Chavez’s death is being marked in Venezuela.
Hugo Chavez died of cancer after 14 years as president.
His successor, Nicolas Maduro, is leading a parade and a ceremony later at the military headquarters in Caracas where Hugo Chavez is buried.
The anniversary comes at a time of tension, with people staging daily anti-government demonstrations.
Venezuelans are deeply divided about Hugo Chavez’s legacy.
His supporters point to the significant reductions in inequality, poverty and malnutrition which Venezuela experienced under his leadership to explain their unwavering backing for “Chavismo”, his distinct brand of socialism.
Hugo Chavez’s critics accused him of being “dictatorial” and of championing the poor at the expense of Venezuela’s middle class.
They say he and current President Nicolas Maduro, who has promised to continue the policies of his predecessor, have ruined the economy of the oil-rich country by alienating foreign investors.
Tens of thousands of people have taken part in marches over the past month demanding that more be done to curb insecurity and improve the economy.
Venezuela has one of the world’s highest murder rates and official figures published in December put inflation at 56.2%.
There have also been pro-government marches, during which thousands of people have expressed their support for Nicolas Maduro, whom they describe as Hugo Chavez’s “son” and “heir”.
Wednesday’s ceremonies will be attended by left-wing leaders from the region, including Cuba’s Raul Castro, Daniel Ortega of Nicaragua, and Bolivia’s Evo Morales.
Opposition leaders have asked their supporters to “respect” the anniversary and to avoid further clashes with security forces, although a march has been scheduled to take place in the central city of Valencia.
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