CORRECTED-Venezuela court endorses Chavez inauguration delay

Wed Jan 9, 2013 12:38pm EST

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(Corrects date of inauguration to Jan. 10 in first paragraph)

CARACAS Jan 9 (Reuters) - The head of Venezuela's Supreme Court said on Wednesday the postponement of Hugo Chavez's planned Jan. 10 inauguration for a new presidential term was constitutionally legitimate.

Luisa Morales, the court's president, gave the judgment at a news conference, saying no new swearing-in was necessary and Chavez remained Venezuela's president, with Nicolas Maduro also continuing in his role as vice-president.

Chavez's recovery after cancer surgery in Cuba means he will not be able to attend the scheduled Jan. 10 ceremony. Chavez, 58, has not been seen nor heard from him almost a month. (Reporting by Eyanir Chinea, Writing by Daniel Wallis, Editing by Andrew Cawthorne and Jackie Frank)

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