March 5th, 2013
09:19 PM ET

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez dies; U.S. embassy officials expelled

58-year-old Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez died today after a long battle with cancer.

President Obama issued a statement tonight:

"At this challenging time of President Hugo Chavez's passing, the United States reaffirms its support for the Venezuelan people and its interest in developing a constructive relationship with the Venezuelan government," Obama said.

That comes just hours after the Venezuelan government expelled two U.S. embassy officials from the country and accused enemies of "attacking" Chavez, suggesting someone may have deliberately infected him with cancer.

CNN's Christiane Amanpour; and Christopher Sabatini, the senior director of policy at the Americas Society and Council of the Americas weigh in on the news.

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