Syrian state media paid homage to late Venezuelan leader Hugo Chavez on Wednesday, saying he had taken an "honourable" position on the two-year-old uprising against the Damascus regime.
Chavez "stood on the side of the Arabs' legitimate rights," said a commentary carried by state news agency SANA. "He took an honourable stance regarding the conspiracy against Syria."
Chavez was a staunch supporter of President Bashar al-Assad and maintained close ties with his regime even as the revolt degenerated into a bloody civil war, drawing mounting international support for the armed opposition.
Chavez "repeatedly expressed his solidarity with the Syrian leadership and people, who have been faced with a savage imperialist attack. He denounced American pressure on Syria," SANA said.
As well as giving Assad's regime political support, Venezuela also made some oil shipments to Syria over the past two years as the revolt sapped its own output.