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Page last updated at 14:43 GMT, Friday, 25 July 2008 15:43 UK

Chavez gets royal Spanish welcome

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King Carlos meets Hugo Chavez

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez has met Spain's king for the first time since they fell out at a conference in Chile last November.

The pair had talks over breakfast at King Juan Carlos's summer house, on the island of Mallorca.

The king famously told Mr Chavez to shut up after he accused Spain's former Prime Minister, Jose Maria Aznar, of being a fascist.

The remarks caused outrage and no shortage of diplomatic tension.

Mr Chavez said before he left for Spain he would like to hug the king but also warned he was not about to shut up.

The two leaders shared smiles and a warm handshake in front of the cameras, but there was no hug.

Mr Chavez arrived an hour late for his appointment and jokingly said to the king: "Why don't we head to the beach?"

Ringtones and jokes

"Por que no te callas?" were the five words uttered angrily by King Juan Carlos, who was fed up with Mr Chavez interrupting a summit of heads of state last November.

They became the buzz of the Spanish speaking world.

It was even turned into a mobile phone ringtone - dozens sprang up in the days following the outburst.

Millions of people downloaded it as "Why don't you shut up?" became a cult slogan.

It spawned hundreds of jokes and cartoons and was emblazoned across T-shirts.

For his part, Mr Chavez accused the king of impudence and arrogance and immediately said he would review the business of all Spanish companies in Venezuela.

Little came of the threat and ties have since improved, but there was still intense interest in this meeting.


SEE ALSO
Chavez offers to hug Spain's king
21 Jul 08 |  Americas
Chavez refuses to be silenced
12 Nov 07 |  Americas
Shut up, Spain's king tells Chavez
10 Nov 07 |  Americas


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