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Palast: I spoke to Ali Rodriguez today, and he was telling me something very interesting, that he called you a couple of days before the coup to warn you that there were some members of OPEC who were planning to stop or cut production because of the situation in the Middle East. And therefore there was danger for you because the United States could not allow you to remain in control of OPEC and Venezuela's oil if there was a boycott coming. The question I have for you, did you understand this as a warning from Ali Rodriguez that a coup was imminent because of the oil situation?

Chávez: In all honesty, there was no direct relationship between that oil scenario - the possibility that production would be cut - and the imminence of the coup. But it was a call of alert, for us to think clearly, and decrease the risk of a complicated situation getting much more difficult. That call helped me clarify to the world, which we did through the Minister of Energy and Mines, that Venezuela wasn't going to support an oil boycott; that Venezuela, as current leader of OPEC, was committed to fulfilling the 1999 Caracas Resolution that says OPEC countries guarantee worldwide consumers a secure oil supply. We only clarified our position.