From Chavez (FT):
President Hugo Chávez's "21st century socialism" reached the UK yesterday when Venezuela signed an agreement to subsidise the fuel bill for London's buses by up to $32m (£16m) a year to fund cheap travel for the capital's poor.
Ken Livingstone, the city's mayor, said the 20 per cent discount would fund half-price rates on buses or trams for 250,000 Londoners who receive income support.
"This arises on the suggestion of President Hugo Chávez and builds on the work his government is doing around the world in tackling the problems of poverty," he said.
In return, the controversial Labour mayor will in April dispatch his transport chief, Peter Hendy, to set up an office in Caracas, where British officials will impart to the Venezuelan capital London's expertise in traffic management and urban planning.
Mr Livingstone acknowledged that the cost of his mission to Caracas will be substantially lower than the value of the fuel subsidy, prompting critics to ask why a developing Latin American nation was offered cash to support a global financial centre.
Richard Barnes, deputy leader of the opposition Conservative group in the London Assembly, said: "For the mayor to develop a foreign policy of his own is a nonsense. We are a G8 [Group of Eight] capital city and we are getting foreign aid."
As part of the original deal with Mr Livingstone, which has been in the works for at least a year, the mayor of London's office had pledged to "actively and efficiently promote Venezuela's image in the UK".
At the same time, people die in extreme poverty in Venezuela, without any medical asistance, and only get a meal from the Government. The story of Yudeisy Zamora, who had Human Papilome Virus (I think that it is translated like that, in Spanish: Virus de Papiloma Humano) which degenerated in a cancer, and who died in the most extreme poverty. No asistance, no early diagnosis, no Government help. She leaves 4 sons.
During these last days in which Venezuela has known her suffering, thanks to her mother, the Asociación Civil Radar de los Barrios (which can be translated as Civil Association Radar of the Districts) writes in the blog post above [translated]:
Recently, USA scientifics have discovered a vaccine against HPV. This vaccine has only a problem: it's expensive. But why Chávez does not expend the money in curing these poor people instead of building a pipeline throughout South America, send a Chinese satellite to space, has bought recently 2 firms who were going OK -CANTV and Electricity of Caracas.
Do Londoners need cheap petrol more than this woman medical assistance?
Traducción: El alcalde de Londres ha llegado a un acuerdo con Hugo Chávez para usar petróleo barato en el transporte público londinense (32 Millones de dólares al año) y a cambio ayudar a Caracas a mejorar en la ordenación del tráfico y del planeamiento urbanístico.
La oposición conservadora ha protestado porque dice que Londres es la capital de un estado perteneciente al G8 y que está recibiendo ayuda extranjera...
Y eso ocurre mientras personas como Yudeisy Zamora mueren por no tener asistencia sanitaria ni la vacuna necesaria porque ¡¡¡es muy cara!!!