Venezuela & ALBA Weekly 5.22.2020 Is US Preparing Armed Conflict against Iran & Venezuela over Iran’s oil shipments?

Venezuela
Venezuelanalysis: Trump Claims to Have Venezuela ‘Surrounded’ as Iranian Tankers Approach “We’ve got it [Venezuela] surrounded, it’s surrounded at a level that nobody even knows but they know. We are watching to see what happens.” Five Iranian tankers are en route to the South American country carrying at least US $45.5 million in gasoline and other products. According to maritime tracking data, the closest vessel, Fortune, is currently three days from port.

Orinoco Tribune: Iran Promises the US a Forceful Response if it Prevents Oil Tankers From Entering Venezuela to Alleviate Gasoline Shortages Iranian Defense Minister Hatami has warned the US that his country will respond firmly to attempts to prevent Persian oil tankers from sailing to Venezuela.“Iran will not tolerate obstacles [to its oil ships]. Both the US and other countries know that we will not hesitate. If the obstacles continue or increase, Iran’s response will be forceful,” Hatami said in a statement.Iran already bombed US bases in Iraq last January in response for the assassination of General Qasem Soleimaní, commander of the elite Quds force of the Revolutionary Guards Corps during an official visit to Iraq.

RT: Venezuela military to Escort Iranian fuel tankers to Caracas against de facto US naval blockade Caracas will send ships and aircraft to ensure five Iranian tankers, said to be loaded with some 1.5 million barrels of oil, make it safely to Venezuelan shores amid reports the US is seeking to hinder the delivery. “When they enter our exclusive economic zone, they will be escorted by Bolivarian National Armed Forces boats and planes to welcome them in and thank the Iranian people for their solidarity and cooperation,” Venezuela’s Defense Minister Vladimir Padrino López said on Wednesday, referring to the five Iranian-flagged vessels expected to bring some much-needed fuel to Venezuela in late May or early June.

Common Dreams: “We’re Ready for Whatever, Whenever,’ Says Maduro as Venezuela Vows Navy Escort to Protect Iranian Oil Tankers from US Threats Following reports that the U.S. was threatening to interfere or “harass” tankers carrying gasoline to Venezuela, the Iranian Foreign Minister Zarif sent a letter to UN Secretary General Guterres warning the US away from any such actions. Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister for Political Affairs Seyyed Abbas Araqchi communicated to the US through available diplomatic channels that because Iran-Venezeula relations are “completely legitimate and legal,” any effort to interfere with the delivery of oil would be a clear violation of international law and warned any threat against its tankers by the U.S. would “be met with Iran’s immediate and firm response.”

COHA: US Threatens to Prevent Iranian-Venezuelan Mutual Assistance Five Iranian supertankers, filled with approximately 45.5 million gallons of gasoline and related fuel products are presently crossing the Atlantic with Venezuela their likely ultimate destination.In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic and in the context of a warning by the UN World Food Program that “we are also on the brink of a hunger pandemic,” Washington is ratcheting up its economic war against Venezuela and Iran to the detriment of efforts by these nations to contain the virus and obtain food and medical supplies. One of the consequences of the US blockade of Venezuela is a gasoline shortage, as any nation that sends the necessary additives to process Venezuelan crude into fuel faces heavy handed sanctions.

Venezuelanalysis: US Blocks UNSC Draft Resolution Denouncing Paramilitary Incursion into Venezuela  Russian Representative to the UN Dmitry Polyanskiy presented a resolution calling on member-states to reject the “use of force… terrorism in all its forms and manifestations… [and] the use of mercenaries.” He later complained that the resolution was “killed” by the US in “nine minutes” despite the draft containing “no accusations, only support of basic common things.”

Venezuela UN Ambassador Samuel Moncada at UN Security Council “The Situation in the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela”. “I must also report the mind-blowing news that just hours ago international media revealed that a powerful Colombian drug trafficking organization, known as “Los Pachenca”, which controls that northern region of La Guajira and which supported the mercenaries and terrorists that participated in the armed attack of 03 May against my country, is in possession of precise operational details on the surveillance routes and the locations of Colombian and U.S. warships in the Caribbean. This official and “top secret”information is being used by this cartel to avoid the very same military forces that are patrolling the area, allegedly, for counter-narcotic purposes. This proves that the real objective of warships in my region is not to fight drug trafficking, but to attack Venezuela instead. This is yet another evidence of the coordination that exists between the intelligence agencies of those countries and narco-paramilitary groups.

Orinoco Tribune: Ambassador Moncada Thanks Countries That Defended International Law at the UN Security Council Nicolás Maduro stressed that Venezuela achieved a great victory on Wednesday May 20 before the UN Security Council.“We have had a great victory in the UN Security Council. Venezuela is shining in world organizations, the true and only government of Venezuela, which is the revolutionary one I preside over,” said the national president. Ambassador Moncada posted a “thank you” tweet to all the countries in the Security Council that stood in defense of international law. Mentioning Russia, China, South Africa, Saint Vincent & Grenadines, Vietnam, Indonesia, Tunisia and Niger

Veterans For Peace Condemns U.S. Mercenary Attack on Venezuela

SputnikNews: Venezuelan Authorities Detain 66 Participants of Attempted Maritime Incursion Last week, the Venezuelan Prosecutor-General’s Office also issued arrest warrants for Jordan Goudreau, CEO of the Silvercorp USA private military company, and 21 other people over their role in the recent attempted invasion in the Latin American country.

Cuba
PrensaLatina: European organizations support Nobel Peace Prize for Cuban doctors More than 25 European organizations are supporting the proposal to award the Cuban medical brigades with the Nobel Peace Prize, due to their contribution to globally fighting the coronavirus pandemic. Code Pink petition

Granma: Twenty days of complicit silence Since the terrorist attack on Cuba’s embassy in Washington, authorities in the country where the deplorable act took place have shown no interest in the event itself or repeated Cuban demands for official information.

Video of May 19 webinar: Cuba, Africa, Caribbean: Paying Humanity’s Debt

TeleSur: Cuba Develops Effective Peptide Against COVID-19  Twelve patients started CIGB-258 therapy in their  severe stages and 19 in the critical disease phase. In the first group, survival was 92 percent, while in the second group it was 73 percent.

TeleSur: Cuba Develops Domestically-Made Ventilator to Fight COVID-19  Cuba  is unable to acquire artificial respiration systems due to the blockade measures that the United States maintains and is still tightening in the current scenario of a pandemic. Recently, two international firms producing this equipment became subsidiaries of companies based in the U.S., with which both ceased their commercial relationship with Cuba during the health emergency.

Nicaragua
Video: CodePink’s Teri Mattson interview with Francisco Campbell, Nicaragua’s Ambassador to the US, on the ramifications of US economic warfare on Nicaragua and the government’s response to COVID-19

Sites to Follow Venezuela, Bolivia, Nicaragua:

Stand with Venezuela

Orinoco Tribune

Venezuela Solidarity New York

End Venezuela Sanctions

Friends of Sandinista Nicaragua

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