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In Venezuela, Hugo Chavez’s Administration Lashes Out At Opposition With Homophobic Slurs

Hugo ChavezVenezuela president Hugo Chavez has his share of headaches: In addition to battling life-threatening cancer, he has to face pesky complaints that his administration is little more than a dictatorship.

So Chavez’s camp is lashing out at the opposition like fifth-graders: They’re calling them gay.

A Queerty reader gave us a heads up on a tweet yesterday from Jacqueline Faria, a senior official in Chavez’s PSUV party, in which she claimed opposition candidate Henrique Capriles was in Manhattan because “it’s easier to come out of the closet in New York than in Los Teques,” the capital city of Miranda, where Capriles was governor.

Screen Shot 2013-03-04 at 4.06.06 PMChavez’s vice president, Nicolas Maduro—who is running the country while Chavez is ill—called Capriles (left) a “decadent prince of the parasitical bourgeoisie” at a rally on Saturday. Maduro joked, “I don’t want to get involved in his personal life, but he’s in Manhattan with a [male] friend of confidence.”

Henrique CaprilesCapriles, a 40-year-old center-right candidate aligned with the Justice First party, lost to Chavez in the most recent national “elections,” held in October.

Last April Maduro appeared at a rally in Caracas, where he called opponents of Chavez “fascist faggots.” The ministers and supporters present broke into riotous applause.

Even Venezuela’s official state television have gotten into the act: In 2012, state media commentator Mario Silva—who often targets Chavez’s foes on his talk show, The Razorblade, alleged police found Capriles (left) in a car having sex with another man.

Critics have claimed the MIA Chavez has actually been brain dead since New Year’s. Well, if he’s not, his henchmen certainly are.

UPDATE: The New York Times reports that Hugo Chavez passed away on March 5, the day after the posting of this article.