Vice President Nicolás Maduro has announced on state television that Hugo Chávez has died following multiple operations and treatment for cancer.
According to the Venezuelan government, the leader of 14 years had succumbed to a new respiratory infection that had severely weakened him.
Maduro has called on Venezuelans to be "dignified inheritors of the giant man" Chávez was.
"Let there be no weakness, no violence. Let there be no hate. In our hearts there should only be one sentiment: Love. Love, peace and discipline."
Venezuelan media has reported that there is to be 7 days of mourning following this news.