Venezuela’s Minister for External Commerce and International Trade Jesus Faria thanked Russia Monday for helping the country fight against its food crisis, which he said is being exploited by the country's right-wing opposition.
The Diplomatic War Against Venezuela
Russia has been providing Venezuela with wheat deliveries as part of a development program signed in May. Under the agreement, Russia agreed to send Venezuela 60,000 tons of wheat per month.
According to Faria, these wheat deliveries have provided a crucial lifeline, ensuring that the Venezuelan people have access to basic food staples.
Much of the country's food problem has been blamed on contraband selling with over 750 opposition-controlled offshore companies accused of purposely redirecting Venezuelan imports of raw food materials from the government to the private sector.
In Venezuela, the food crisis is being exploited by the country's right-wing forces, which are attempting to destabilize the leftist government with the support of the U.S., Faria said, according to Sputnik.
However, the minister added that Russia is helping to fight the food blackmail of Venezuela, Sputnik reported.
"It is very important aid, and a very decent and constructive position of the Russian government to stimulate dialogue, peaceful coexistence and the respect of democracy in our country," Faria continued.
As part of the agreement, five new companies are set to be established in Venezuela for the manufacture of Russian industrial vehicles.
Carlos Rafael Faria Tortosam, the head of the Venezuelan diplomatic mission to Russia, also indicated that Venezuela is ready to expand food exports to Russia.
“We are able to deliver mangoes and citrus fruit like oranges and tangerines. Russia consumes a lot of tropical fruit juice, hence there are wide opportunities for cooperation," Tortosam told Sputnik.
The increased cooperation between Russia and Venezuela comes as the South American nation is combatting food shortages; U.S. military, financial and diplomatic aggression; and violent opposition protests which have left at least 70 people dead.
In an effort to tackle the crisis, Venezuela is looking to form new trade partnerships. As well as the deal with Russia, Venezuela has signed cooperative agreements with China, Trinidad and Tobago and Palestine.