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Russia to strengthen Venezuelan military

Russian efforts to bolster Venezuelan armed forces to focus on equipment maintenance within existing accords, says diplomat

Elena Teslova   | 05.07.2019
Russia to strengthen Venezuelan military

MOSCOW 

Russia will strengthen Venezuela's armed forces, a top Russian diplomat said on Friday.

Efforts will be conducted within existing agreements and primarily focusing on the maintenance of military equipment delivered to Venezuela by Russia, Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov told reporters in Moscow.

"We will certainly, within the framework of existing agreements, take measures to strengthen the potential of the armed forces of this country," he said.

Ryabkov added that the repeated attempts by the U.S. to destabilize the country failed due to Venezuelans' support for the legitimately elected government.

Venezuela has been rocked by protests since January, when President Nicolas Maduro was sworn in for a second term following a vote boycotted by the opposition.

Tensions escalated when Juan Guaido declared himself acting president days later, a move supported by the U.S. and many European and Latin American countries.

Russia, Turkey, China, Iran, Bolivia and Mexico have thrown their weight behind Maduro.

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