Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez expressed outrage over the death of Moammar Gadhafi, calling the deceased Libyan dictator a "martyr" and his killing an "outrage."
"Sadly the death of Gadhafi has been confirmed," Chavez told reporters in Venezuela on Thursday, AFP reported. "They assassinated him. It is another outrage."
The two leaders were allies and friends over the years, welcoming one another to their respective countries and presenting each other with gifts and honors.
According to CNN, Chavez learned of Gadhafi's death as he returned Thursday from Cuba, where he's been receiving treatment for cancer.
"I was talking with [Cuban leader] Raul Castro. He was telling me 'Gadhafi is going to get killed for sure,'" Chavez said. "I will remember him all of my life as a great fighter, a revolutionary and a martyr."
Chavez has refused to recognize the new Libyan regime, calling the country's new U.N. representative a "dummy" and a "puppet," according to AFP. Earlier this year, he offered to help mediate the unfolding political crisis, an offer that did not gain much traction though one Gadhafi reportedly accepted.
“Live and be victorious. We’re with you," Chavez said in August, addressing Gadhafi during a speech.
Chavez also had harsh words for the U.S., saying "the empire" is determined to destroy the world.
“The saddest thing is that in its quest to dominate the world, the empire and its allies are setting it on fire,” he said.