Tanks and soldiers joined thousands of government supporters on Monday in the streets of Caracas to commemorate a 1992 coup attempt led by President Hugo Chavez.
Thousands upon thousands of Venezuelan workers marched through the capital.
Vice-President Nicolas Maduro read a letter (pictured) from the president saying he was sorry to miss the celebration "but it is required by this battle that I'm fighting for my full recovery.
"I'm with you all, wearing my red beret," he said.
Mr Maduro told the crowd near the presidential palace that he is confident that Mr Chavez will return from his Cuban hospital bed to take part next year.
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