Diaz-Canel visits Venezuela, first trip as Cuban leader

Cuban President Miguel Diaz-Canel (L), seen here with former president Raul Castro during a May Day rally in Havana, is visiting Venezuela on his first foreign trip as president

Cuban President Miguel Diaz-Canel arrived in the Venezuelan capital Caracas on Wednesday on his first foreign visit as president ahead of talks with President Nicolas Maduro.

"Very happy to be in Venezuela and long live the Bolivarian revolution and also long live President Maduro," Diaz-Canel said on arrival at Caracas' Maiquetia airport.

The Cuban leader congratulated Maduro on his re-election in controversial May 20 elections that have not been recognized by the US, EU and 13 Latin American countries.

He described Maduro's victory in an election boycotted by the main opposition as an "overwhelming success."

He said he was bringing "a fraternal and supportive message from Army General Raul Castro, First Secretary of the Communist Party of Cuba, and from the Cuban people."

It is Diaz-Canel's first foreign visit as Cuban president since succeeding Castro on April 19.

Maduro visited Cuba on April 20.

Diaz-Canel is expected to visit the tomb of late president Hugo Chavez, who forged close ties with Fidel and Raul Castro during his 1999-2013 presidency, which included supplying cheap oil to the Communist-ruled island.

Cuban President Miguel Diaz-Canel (L), seen here with former president Raul Castro during a May Day rally in Havana, is visiting Venezuela on his first foreign trip as president