Russia and Venezuela are joining forces to create a defense strategy in case of invasion, Venezuelan Defense Minister Vladimir Padrino Lopez confirmed Monday.
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“We must tell the people of Venezuela and the entire world that just as we are cooperating in various areas of development for both peoples, we are also preparing to defend Venezuela to the last extent when necessary,” said Padrino.
The South American country received Russian military personnel and a pair of T-160 bombers Monday, just one week after President Nicolas Maduro’s visit to Moscow to strengthen political and economic relations.
Maduro also reported the closure of a six-million-dollar investment agreement for the maintenance and reparation of Russian weaponry. Russia committed to continual supply Venezuela with military aircraft and ships as part of a bilateral military cooperation.
Since the Hugo Chavez administration in 2005, Venezuela has maintained a close relationship with Russia, referring to the former as a “strategic ally.”
Over the last year, the United States has imposed mounting economic sanctions and threats of military action which have been widely condemned around the world.