Russian President Vladimir Putin expressed his deepest condolences to Vice President of Venezuela Nicolas Maduro and the Venezuelan people in connection with the death of President Hugo Chavez.
Putin called Chavez an outstanding leader, who was a close friend of Russia, the press service of the Kremlin said.
Putin had many meetings with Hugo Chavez. In his telegram, Putin said that Chavez was "an extraordinary and strong man, who was looking into the future, always setting highest standards for himself."
Putin pointed out Chavez's contribution to the development and strengthening of Russian-Venezuelan relations. According to the Russian President, owing to direct efforts of the Venezuelan leader, the two countries developed strong political ties and launched large-scale humanitarian and economic projects. In addition, Putin expressed his confidence to continue to strengthen and develop relations between Russia and Venezuela.