Venezuela – Iran Alliance

By Anna Varfolomeeva

BEIJING— (October 21 —M4relay) – Venezuela and Iran have denounced US imperialism and called for a “new world order”, saying they are united in trying to eliminate western dominance in global affairs, according to an Aljazeera report.

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, the Iranian president, and visiting Venezuelan counterpart, Hugo Chavez, were quoted by Iranian media as calling their relationship a “strategic alliance”.

“We are united and determined to end the current unjust which dominates the world and replace it with a new world order based on justice,” said Ahmadinejad.

“Iran and Venezuela are united to establish a new world order based on humanity and justice. We believe that the only result of bullying movements of imperialism all around the world, and especially in Latin America, will be the fast decline of imperial power,” Ahmadinejad said at a joint news conference, referring to the United States.

Chavez said this is a time of “great threats” that make it necessary to swiftly “consolidate strategic alliances in political, economic, technological, energy and social areas”, according to the state-run Venezuelan News Agency.

Iran and Venezuela have over the past five years signed a series of agreements on oil and gas cooperation as the Iranian industry has been hit by pullouts by Western firms in the face of UN and US sanctions.

In 2009 Chavez said that Iran was helping his country in uranium mining. He explained that Iranian experts are engaged in the work on the search fields and analysis of soils and rocks, presumably rich in uranium. Chavez stressed that Venezuela’s nuclear program is purely peaceful, and nuclear energy will be used for civilian purposes only.

The Venezuelan leader did not hide the fact that the development of its nuclear program is conducted with the support and assistance of Russia. He also noted that the government takes responsibility for these actions and that everything was under control.

However, the U.S. allies like Israel believe that Iran and Venezuela are cooperating to establish terror bases and infrastructure across Latin America, according to a Haaretz report.

The second wave of rumors was caused by the contract Venezuela signed with Russia for building a nuclear power plant.

According to CNN, it was the latest example of increasingly close cooperation between the two nations on matters of energy, trade and defense — a relationship that has raised eyebrows in the United States.

“I don’t know who might wince from this news,” Medvedev said at a news conference. “The president (Chavez) said that there are countries which may have different feelings about it. But I’d like to say that our intentions are absolutely pure and open.”

U.S. President Barack Obama said Venezuela had a right to develop its own nuclear program, but the government has to reassure them that it will be used only for peaceful purposes.

According to the President of the Middle East Institute in Russia, Evgeny Satanovsky, if Venezuela stops selling the U.S. 12 percent of oil that the country receives from it, and offered its territory to Iran to locate a military base where missiles against the United States could be placed, it would be an extremely negative and dangerous development for the U.S. And it is not even necessary to run these missiles. “Having the threat is a factor that can paralyze the economic life of the United States, remember what happened recently in London when there was a risk of an attack,” Satanovsky said.

While the U.S. is trying to show that Venezuela might be a threat for the country, the U.S. is at the same time transforming Venezuela’s neighbor Colombia into a giant military base. At least seven bases were negotiated to be established in 2009, according to Common Dreams.

“Independent nations have potential and if they consolidate, they can multiply their power in the face of imperialism,” Chavez was quoted as saying.

Ahmadinejad and Chavez “share a strategic foreign policy vision that is rooted in their defiance of what is often referred to as the U.S.-led world order,” said Diego Moya-Ocampos and Gala Riani, Latin America and Middle-East analysts for IHS Global Insight in London.

According to Bloomberg Businessweek, Iran’s ties with Venezuela have intensified since Ahmadinejad took office in 2005. Both countries are members of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, and Ahmadinejad and Chavez have used their nations’ oil wealth to pay for social programs benefiting the poor. The two presidents are also outspoken critics of U.S. foreign policy, which they characterize as imperialistic.

*Anna Varfolomeeva is an international reporter at M4 Media

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