Chavez rebuffs Pentagon report on Iranian forces in Venezuela

President Hugo Chavez rebuffed a Pentagon report that claimed that an elite unit from Iran's Revolutionary Guard has a presence in Venezuela.

Chavez rebuffs Pentagon report on Iranian forces in Venezuela

President Hugo Chavez rebuffed a Pentagon report that claimed that an elite unit from Iran's Revolutionary Guard has a presence in Venezuela, warning that the United States could be looking for an excuse to attack his country.

Chavez on Monday called the 12-page report that was delivered to the U.S. Congress last week "a disgrace," saying "these are the things they raise and repeat in reports to later justify anything."

In the report, the Pentagon concluded that Iran's Qods Force, an elite unit within its Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, is well established and increasing its presence in Latin America, particularly Venezuela.

"It's totally false," Chavez said of the report's findings.

The unclassified Pentagon report did not include more details on what an increased presence by the Qods Force might entail.

Since taking office in 1999, Chavez has strengthened ties with Iran. The two countries have signed a wide range of cooperation agreements including the construction of an auto-assembly plant and agriculture projects in Venezuela.

But the two increasingly close allies have not publicly signed any deals regarding military cooperation.

"If the U.S. applies sanctions to Iran, these forces that are here -- something that is absolutely false -- could then attack U.S. territory or U.S. interests with terrorist acts."

Chavez said the accusation was part of a tactic of intimidation against his government.

"Tell me this isn't an open threat by the government of the United States against Venezuela once again using infamy and lies," he said.


Agencies

Last Mod: 27 Nisan 2010, 14:25
Add Comment