Russian military experts will remain in Venezuela as long as the republic’s government needs it, Russian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said at Thursday’s briefing.
"How long? As long as they need it, and as long as the Venezuelan government needs them. It all is being done based on bilateral agreements," the diplomat said in response to a question. "There are international and bilateral legal frameworks for it," TASS quoted her as saying.
According to the spokeswoman the United States has got cart blanche from the Netherlands to use the Curacao island (which is part of the kingdom) as a springboard for aggressive intervention in Venezuela. "We’ve taken note of the agreement signed between the Netherlands and the United States on using the infrastructures of the Curacao island for humanitarian supplies to Venezuela," she said. "At first sight this agreement merely opens access for US officials to Curacao’s infrastructures exclusively for providing humanitarian aid, but, as it has turned out, this deal does not rule out the possibility of using not only civilian but other means of delivery. Of what type? Clearly, military ones."
"In the context of the current realities The Hague has in fact given the Americans a free hand to use its former colony as a springboard for aggressive intervention in Venezuela’s affairs under the cover of humanitarian slogans," Zakharova stated. "We hope that the Curacao authorities will not allow the island’s territory to be used as a springboard for another Western adventure capable of destabilizing the situation in the region."
In a comment released on March 26, Zakharova said that experts from Russia arrived in Venezuela in strict compliance with the country’s constitution and the bilateral intergovernmental agreement on military-technical cooperation signed in May 2001.
Earlier there were official reports about the arrival of An-124 and Il-62 planes to Caracas Airport on March 23, carrying Russian servicemen and 35 tonnes of cargo on board. Venezuelan President of the Constituent Assembly Diosdado Cabello later confirmed the information about two Russian planes.