CARACAS: Firebrand Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez insisted that he is "totally" cancer-free and ready to take on what promises to be a tough re-election battle without "physical restrictions."
"Free, totally free," he replied when asked by a reporter if he had beaten the disease, as he gears up for the bruising campaign against unified opposition rival Henrique Capriles ahead of the October 7 vote.
"Thanks to God, I am here and every day I feel in better physical condition, and I really don't think this expression 'physical restrictions'... will be a factor in the campaign," he told a news conference.
"I would like to first thank Christ the Redeemer for allowing me to get through this difficult year and be with the Venezuelan people to start this battle," he said in a fiery 90-minute speech.
He said Monday he would lead several campaign rallies later in the week outside the capital Caracas. AGENCIES