Venezuela entitled to buy arms from any country, Iran included: Maduro
Iran Press TV
Thursday, 29 October 2020 11:21 AM
President Nicolas Maduro of Venezuela says his country reserves the right to buy weapons from any nation, including Iran and Russia.
Maduro made the remark during a press conference in the capital, Caracas, on Wednesday, as he was responding to the allegation made by Colombian President Ivan Duque that Venezuela had bought missiles from Iran.
"Venezuela can buy bullets, weaponry, tanks, planes, and missiles from a country that wants to sell them, be it the United States, Colombia, Iran, Russia, China, India — any country", Maduro said.
Stressing that Tehran and Caracas had had long-term relationships in many sectors, the Venezuelan president rejected Duque's allegations but welcomed the idea of arms purchases from Iran.
"Duque said that Venezuela had bought missiles from Iran. And I replied that this was not true, but it seemed to me a very good idea," Maduro said, adding that Venezuela would consider such purchases if need be.
Relations between Venezuela and Iran go back around 70 years and have featured considerable alignment over the past two decades, in clear opposition to Washington's unilateralist and interventionist foreign policy.
Five Iranian vessels carried out fuel delivery missions to Venezuela between May and June, with another flotilla also delivering the equipment that the Latin American country needed to shore up its gasoline industry, which has been hit hard by American sanctions.
Venezuela experienced political turmoil when opposition figure Juan Guido unilaterally declared himself "interim president" in January last year, followed by a US-backed botched coup against the elected government. There was also an attempt at assassinating President Maduro in a drone strike in 2018.
Guaido's self-proclamation and his coup attempt received backing from the US administration.
Washington has imposed several rounds of crippling sanctions against the oil-rich South American country aimed at ousting Maduro and replacing him with Guaido.
The sanctions, which include the illegal confiscation of Venezuelan assets abroad and an economic blockade, have caused enormous suffering for millions of people in the country.
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