by W. Alex Sánchez
Council On Hemispheric Affairs
Hugo Chávez Frias, President of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, passed away on March 5, 2013, due to severe health complications. For at least the past year and half, the Venezuelan head of state had been battling cancer that continued to appear in spite of several surgeries. He traveled to Cuba for a new round of treatment this past December 2012, naming his vice President, Nicolas Maduro, as his successor, should the worst happen.