The US is publicly considering a military operation in Venezuela. The Venezuelan government is preparing to resist.
Venezuela erected a S-300 missile defense system launcher on April 7th, satellite imagery revealed.
#Venezuela: Erected #S300 (VM) #launcher and additional activity of the battery were detected (7 April 2019) in the #operational deployment areas of Capitán Manuel Rios #airbase.#ISI #Intelligence #IMINT #VISINT pic.twitter.com/hK5MOPd9OB
— ImageSat Intl. (@ImageSatIntl) April 10, 2019
Significant activity surrounding the operational deployment areas of Capitán Manuel Rios #airbase was also noticed.
Activity in the air base was noted earlier, on March 24th as well.
The missile system was put into operational readiness following a military drill back in February.
#Followup: #Venezuela has put the #S300 into #operational readiness, after conducting drills in February 2019 (as reported previously by #ISI).#Colombia #intelligence #Satellite #military #defence #defense #MaduroRegime #Update #imagery pic.twitter.com/JerkoIcozn
— ImageSat Intl. (@ImageSatIntl) March 24, 2019
The deployment followed Venezuela President Nicolas Maduro acknowledging that two Russian planes landed in Caracas, Venezuela, as part of a military co-operation between the two countries.
Separately, Nicolas Maduro in a twitter address claimed that Venezuelan authority neutralize up to 4 attacks on the Power Grid every day.
— Nicolás Maduro (@NicolasMaduro) April 10, 2019
“Electric energy sector workers do not sleep. They are protecting the system from attacks around the clock. Every day, we neutralize two-three-four attacks on the electricity supply system,” Maduro said.
The president also promised Venezuelans that the authorities would continue making efforts to overcome the consequences of the recent attacks on the country’s power supply system.
Venezuela suffered yet another blackout on April 9th, after a power overload failure occurred as a result of the damage caused by alleged attacks against the electric grid. Communications Minister Jorge Rodriguez explained that work was undergoing on restoring power and it was, in fact, restored within 3 hours.
Meanwhile, US four-star Admiral Craig Faller, US Southern Command head, said that the military is ‘on the balls of our feet’ awaiting instruction from the Trump administration on military intervention in Venezuela.
According to him, ‘The crisis in Venezuela could approach that degree by the end of this year if Maduro still remains in power. It’s that bad.’ He also compared the situation in Venezuela with the “chaos” in Syria under President Bashar al-Assad.
‘President Trump is determined not to see Venezuela fall under the sway of foreign powers,’ Trump’s national security adviser John Bolton said.
He also referenced the Monroe Doctrine and said that if it ‘fails, if China and Russia, along with Cuba, establish domination over Venezuela, I think American strategic interests will be harmed.’
On the part of the US, Vice President Mike Pence spoke to the UN Security Council on April 10th.
In his address, he used the chance to expectedly call for Nicolas Maduro to step down and praise US-Proclaimed Interim President Juan Guaido.
Pence also directly called out Venezuela’s UN Ambassador Samuel Moncada, telling him that “he shouldn’t be here.”
The United Nations should revoke the credentials of Venezuela’s ambassador to the @UN, recognize Interim President @jguaido, and seat a representative of the free Venezuelan government in this body without delay! pic.twitter.com/1CRhBBr5J6
— Vice President Mike Pence (@VP) April 10, 2019
Pence also accused China and Russia of making the crisis in Venezuela worse by blocking the US resolution on the country in the UN.
In February, the U.S. introduced a resolution calling for the restoration of democracy in Venezuela & for aid be released into the country. Russia & China blocked it. They continue to obstruct at the @UN & rogue states like Iran and Cuba are doing all they can to prop up Maduro. pic.twitter.com/yK8UgqTvOL
— Vice President Mike Pence (@VP) April 10, 2019
He also announced the US will be providing nearly $61 million in humanitarian assistance, in addition to the $213 million the State Department says it has already provided to Venezuelan refugees living in nearby countries – as well as $43 million in development and economic assistance. All of the US aid has been rejected by Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro.
After the Security Council meeting, Pence told reporters he believed that the momentum is on the side of the US position.
“We really do believe that freedom has the momentum but now it’s time for this body, this historic institution to step forward and to give voice to that momentum and we’re going to be reaching out to nations across the world to join us,” he said.
In response to Mike Pence, Venezuelan Ambassador to the UN Samuel Moncada retorted that “the only state representing Venezuela is the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela,” he said and framed the so-called humanitarian crisis as “part of the machinary of lies spread about the government of Venezuela.”
“To begin, I think it is called upon us to speak on the falsehoods that have been spoken about Venezuela,” he said and denounced that a new coup attempt that had just happened, as “the U.S. is attempting to pillage our resources.”
The Venezuelan government also released a statement categorically rejecting US attacks on Venezuela’s oil sector.
Russian Ambassador the UN Vasily Nebenzia also commented on Pence’s words, questioning the US’ actual intentions in Venezuela.
“The U.S. has still not overcome the devastation of Hurricane Maria,” the Russian ambassador said in response to Pence claiming the U.S. is trying to deliver aid to Venezuela, adding that the Venezuelan government “is not rejecting humanitarian assistance. Russia and other countries have provided assistance along with WHO.”
He also accused the US of causing the crisis in Venezuela, due to its geopolitical interest of controlling the region.
“If you want to make America great again stop interfering in the interest of other states,” Nebenzya said and, addressing the Latin American neighboring, made it clear that “Venezuela is a bargaining chip for geopolitical influence in the world.”
The Russian diplomat also said that “we call on the U.S. to recognize the right of the Venezuelan people’s rights to choose their leadership.”
#Live | #Russia's Permanent Representative to the #UnitedNations Vasily Nebenzya: "You're grabbing #Venezuela by the throat with these sanctions."
Follow live here: https://t.co/nrsJi7BiEJ pic.twitter.com/zfH34n4YZY
— teleSUR English (@telesurenglish) April 10, 2019
The Chinese Ambassador to the UN Liu Jieyi also said that China was monitoring the situation and that “Unilateral sanctions will only worsen the situation. It won’t help resolve the problems nor will it bring peace.”
Iran is also expressing its support for Venezuela, with Iranian political representatives traveling to Venezuela as part of a framework of political consultations, aimed among other things to counter the U.S. attempts to destabilize Venezuelan state.
The Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Islamic Republic of Iran Mohsen Baharvand accompanied by a political delegation and members of the Iranian airline Mahan studied the possibility of implementing direct flights between Iran and Venezuela.
Raul Castro also pledged that Cuba would never abandon its ally Venezuela in the face of US “blackmail.”
MORE ON THE TOPIC:
- US Actions In Venezuela In 2019 Repeat Scenario Of 2013 Video Game Made With DoD Consultant
- Competing Protests In Venezuela. US Imposes Further Sanctions On Country’s State Oil Company