Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro recently visited the famous celebrity chef and butcher sensation Nusret Gökçe's Nusr-Et steakhouse in Istanbul and was spotted enjoying a specially-prepared meal.
Maduro stopped over briefly in Turkey on the way home from a trip to China to raise investment and secure financing for Venezuela.
In the videos, he can be seen puffing on a cigar from a personalized box while he and first lady Cilia Flores watch Gökçe, clad in dark aviator glasses and a bicep-busting T-shirt, rhythmically sway his hips while cutting into a juicy steak with a long knife.
Gökçe, a worldwide restaurateur better known by his nickname Salt Bae, posted the videos on his Instagram account seen by some 16 million followers alongside photos of him serving clients like Argentine soccer legend Diego Maradona and posing as Don Corleone from the "Godfather" movies.
Appearing on television Monday night, Maduro called the meal a "once-in-a-lifetime opportunity" and thanked Gökçe for his hospitality, saying he hoped to see him soon in Caracas.
Gökçe later deleted the images and a thank you post to Maduro after facing backlash from critics of the Venezuelan president, who blame his leadership for the country's deep economic crisis.
Maduro and President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan have deepened economic and political ties, especially as the U.S. has imposed sanctions on both countries.
In July, during a previous visit to Istanbul, Maduro dressed up as an Ottoman horseman while visiting the set of a popular Turkish TV series, "Resurrection: Ertuğrul," which the Venezuelan leader said he watches back home.
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