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Russia withdraws key defense advisers support to Maduro, seen as major setback

 

Russia has withdrawn key defense advisers from Venezuela, an embarrassment for President Nicolás Maduro as Moscow weighs the leader’s political and economic resilience against growing U.S. pressure.

 

Russian state defense contractor Rostec, which has trained Venezuelan troops and advised on securing arms contracts, has cut its staff in Venezuela to just a few dozen, from about 1,000 at the height of cooperation between Moscow and Caracas several years ago, said a person close to the Russian defense ministry.

 

The gradual pullout, which has escalated over the last several months, according to people familiar with the situation, is due to a lack of new contracts and the acceptance that Mr. Maduro’s regime no longer has the cash to continue to pay for other Rostec services associated with past contracts.

 

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https://www.counterpunch.org/2019/06/19/guaidos-star-fades-as-his-envoys-to-colombia-allegedly-commit-fraud-with-humanitarian-funds-for-venezuela/

 



In an investigative report, “Envoys of Guaidó Appropriate Funds for Humanitarian Assistance in Colombia” (June 14, 2019), Editor in Chief of PanAm Post, Orlando Avendaño, details the alleged “diversion of money, embezzlement of funds, inflation of bills, fraud, and threats [by representatives of self proclaimed president of Venezuela, Juan Guaidó] in order to surround themselves with luxuries.”

 

These allegations of fraud committed by functionaries of Guaidó in Colombia are raising alarm within the fractured Venezuelan opposition about the political damage this might do to their cause, but for critics of the US backed shadow Venezuelan government, this is just the tip of the iceberg, with the expectation of more such revelations of fraud to come.

 

Among a trove of documentary evidence, including itemized invoices, Avendaño provides a copy of a letter from Guaidó to Carlos Holmes Trujillo Garcia, Minister of Foreign Relations of the Republic of Colombia, dated February 24, 2019. In the letter, Guaidó designates Kevin Rojas and Rossana Barrera, both members of the right-wing opposition Venezuelan political party, Voluntad Popular (VP), to “attend to the situation” of Venezuelan military personnel and civilians who “enter  Colombian territory seeking help and refuge.” Avendaño points out that “Rossana Barrera is the sister-in-law of National Assembly Deputy of the party Voluntad Popular, Sergio Vergara, right-hand man of president Juan Guaidó.” She was part of Guaidó’s inner circle.

 

To put Guaidó’s letter in context, we move our focus for a moment to the frontier town of Cúcuta, Colombia, which is just across the border from the Venezuelan town of San Cristóbal, Táchira. (2) We return to the events of February 23, 2019, that fateful day when US and Colombian backed Guaidó and his supporters had planned to force a convoy of  “humanitarian aid” trucks over the border, with the objective of scoring a propaganda victory against the Maduro administration and inspiring army defections, all as a prelude to a coup against the constitutional government of Venezuela.

 

The US-Colombian-Venezuelan opposition alliance pulled out all the stops; there was to be a media show on a grand scale surrounding the actions in Cúcuta. A concert fundraiser, Venezuela Live Aid, starring Richard Branson, was held on February 22, and a media campaign gave the impression that Guaidó’s aim was to deliver “humanitarian assistance” for Venezuela. But the plan began to unravel as soon as it commenced.  The three million dollars raised by the concert is still not accounted for. And the majority of the food on the trucks would end up rotting in place. Neither the International Red Cross nor the United Nations would lend credibility to Washington’s insistence that this was a “humanitarian” mission. The whole project was tainted by the obvious ulterior motive of attempting to bring about regime change in Venezuela.

 

Rest of the story is in the link above.

 

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