Entry to bases, army help and advisers: how Russia strikes its chips in Cuba and Venezuela

CUCUTA, Colombia.- Moscow has moved its Latin American chips on the board of worldwide geostrategy: Cuba and Venezuela as doable castling of Ukraine. That is the specter of the regime Vladimir Putin, which this Thursday unfold like wildfire on the continent. The first to react had been the interim authorities and the Venezuelan democratic Parliament, which issued an alert to the world concerning the “potential armed intervention in the country”.

Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov, who led the Russian delegation to Monday’s negotiations in Geneva, did certainly say Thursday in televised remarks that may neither affirm nor exclude the potential for Russia establishing a army infrastructure in Cuba and Venezuela. Talks in Geneva and Wednesday’s assembly between Russia and NATO in Vienna have failed to scale back disagreements over Russia’s safety calls for, as Russia retains troops stationed close to Ukraine.

“What does Russia want? Make us part of a conflict that is not even Latin American?”, was questioned Juan Guaido, Acting President. Among the dissidents and the Cuban opposition, alarms additionally unfold over the specter of the Russians, recognized through the Soviet period because the “bowling” on the island.

Opposition leader Juan Guaidó
Opposition chief Juan Guaidó

“The Russian deputy foreign minister ignores the Venezuelan constitutional provision that prevents the establishment of foreign bases or facilities that have military purposes in our territory. However, foreign troops could be with permission of the National Assembly”, specified Rocío San Miguel, president of Citizen Control for the National Armed Forces.

The Caribbean is already experiencing a chapter of the “new cold war”, as outlined by the historian Armando Chaguaceda. In precept, nothing to do with the missile disaster, which has already been six many years outdated. What has been confirmed for years is the Russian advance, particularly in Venezuela, after the “withdrawal” attributable to the autumn of the Berlin Wall.

In Latin America they have not stationed troops permanently, but have access to bases in Cuba, Nicaragua and Venezuela”, summarized Chaguaceda, a specialist in revolutions.

The Russian army presence in Venezuela is mainly all of the technical personnel that present help and help for the Russian tools that operates within the Bolivarian National Armed Forces (FANB). There are additionally coaching components, Russian particular forces items in addition to army contracting firms that present coaching to Venezuelan army and police personnel. It is speculated that this help from particular items and army contractors is accompanied by operational help within the deployment of the armed forces within the combat in opposition to armed parastatal teams”, revealed to LA NACION Andrei Serbín, one of many main army specialists on the continent.

In 2020, eight Russian drone specialists participated alongside the Bolivarian forces within the Operation Shark, the hunt and seize of the insurgent troopers who landed on the Venezuelan coast. It was concerning the first army operation with Russians to date this century.

A deployment that final yr was extra important through the pitched battle between Colombian guerrillas within the border state of Apure, with the participation of Venezuelan troopers. Through pictures it was doable to confirm how Russian troopers assisted the Special Forces of Maduro (FAES), the well-known “extermination squads”, in accordance with the UN,

“The Bolivarian National Armed Forces (FANB) denied that it was Russian personnel, but the rifle, the shoes and the equipment indicated that they were Russian”, confirmed Serbín, who has additionally corroborated the presence within the oil nation “of two or three Russian companies of military contractors (mercenaries) that are providing their services in Venezuela”.

the controversial Wagner Group, a Russian paramilitary group, has additionally made an look in Venezuela, though it’s unattainable to know what number of males it has deployed. “There was controversy over a fake Wagner recruitment page, which was actually a move by Ukrainian intelligence to try to grab people willing to join Wagner in Ukraine. They said there were 2,000 in Venezuela, who knows where that number came from. Today there are no clear indications”, confirmed Serbín to LA NACION.

“I am concerned that reference is made to a deployment of military assets, which could imply what Russia is doing in Africa, which is giving carte blanche to its independent foreign policy agents, like the Wagner group”, added San Miguel.

In Cuba, the scenario could be very totally different from that skilled within the different chilly struggle. “The Russians had three fundamental military-type presences. One at the Lourdes radio-intelligence base, located on the outskirts of Havana, with the capacity to monitor a large part of the United States’ communications.

Russia has been a traditional partner of Cuba, although Putin has wanted to increase his relations in Latin America
Russia has been a traditional partner of Cuba, although Putin has wanted to increase his relations in Latin America Getty Images

That base was closed by Putin in 2001. The second presence was the Cienfuegos submarine base, where those operating in the Atlantic refueled. Y the third was the military brigade, made up of four battalions, two mechanized, one for tanks, and another for artillery that existed until the end of the Soviet Union, with up to 3,000 men and capable of combat on land.

Those three presences were dismantled, but military technical cooperation is maintained, in the embassy, with advisors and collaboration in the military technical industry that has modernized the Soviet equipment”, concludes the historian Chaguaceda

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