updated 4/16/2009 3:41:42 PM ET 2009-04-16T19:41:42

President Hugo Chavez says Venezuela will vote against the declaration of the Summit of the Americas in a gesture of protest against the United States.

The summit brings together all 34 members of the Organization of American States. But Chavez says it reinforces a U.S. strategy that he says treats the rest of Latin America as subservient to Washington's interests.

The Venezuelan socialist also says Cuba should not be excluded from the summit, which begins Friday in the Caribbean nation of Trinidad and Tobago.

Chavez says a new hemispheric group is needed instead, one that doesn't give the United States such power.

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