CARACAS – Published on: Mar 24, 2019 @ 23:33 – A flight-tracking website showed that two planes left from a Russian military airport bound for Caracas on Friday, and another flight-tracking site showed that one plane left Caracas on Sunday.
Two Russian air force planes landed in Venezuela’s main airport on Saturday carrying a Russian defense official and nearly 100 troops, according to local journalists, as Moscow demonstrates to the rest of the international community that its red line on Venezuela is similar to its red line on Syria.
I think this is disembarkment. On the footage of landing An-124 these heavy trucks were empty.
— Capt(N) (@Capt_Navy) March 24, 2019
The report comes three months after the two nations held military exercises on Venezuelan soil that President Nicolas Maduro called a sign of strengthening relations, but which Washington criticized as Russian encroachment in the region. At the same time, Venezuela is a sovereign state whose government is the product of an autochtonous process of resisting imperial encroachment. Russian military advisers or other personnel would be in Venezuela at the request of Caracas.
Reporter Javier Mayorca wrote on Twitter on Saturday that the first plane carried Vasily Tonkoshkurov, chief of staff of the ground forces, adding that the second was a cargo plane carrying 35 tonnes of material.
An Ilyushin IL-62 passenger jet and an Antonov AN-124 military cargo plane left for Caracas on Friday from Russian military airport Chkalovsky, stopping along the way in Syria, according to flight-tracking website Flightradar24.
The cargo plane left Caracas on Sunday afternoon, according to Adsbexchange, another flight-tracking site.
Russia’s Defense Ministry and Foreign Ministry did not reply to messages seeking a comment. The Kremlin spokesman also did not reply to a request for comment.
The Trump administration has levied crippling sanctions on the OPEC nation’s oil industry in efforts to push Maduro from power and has called on Venezuelan military leaders to abandon him. Maduro has denounced the sanctions as U.S. interventionism and has won diplomatic backing from Russia and China. To date, the U.S efforts have floundered, with their hand-picked ‘president’, Guaido, being unable to exercise any power, despite U.S declarations.
Here, the U.S has lost considerable credibility in its ‘own backyard’. The U.S has, on an official level, broken with the UN framework of sovereign nation-states, each with their right to self-determination, and has instead openly declared a reinstitution of the Monroe Doctrine. FRN’s parent organization, CSS, forecasted this specific eventuality with high precision in 2015.
In December, two Russian strategic bomber aircraft capable of carrying nuclear weapons landed Venezuela in a show of support for Maduro’s socialist government, a move that infuriated Washington and showed it unable to respond in kind.
Maduro on Wednesday said Russia would send medicine “next week” to Venezuela, without describing how it would arrive, adding that Moscow in February had sent some 300 tonnes of humanitarian aid already to date, adding credibility to the claims regarding future support.
Venezuela in February had blocked a convoy carrying what the U.S termed ‘humanitarian aid for the crisis-stricken country’ that was coordinated with the team of opposition leader Juan Guaido, but it was revealed after Guiado’s supporters set fire to the convoy in order to conceal their contents, that these included military supplies provided by the United States.