Russian mercenaries sent to Venezuela to protect dictator Nicolas Maduro were routed through Cuba

The mercenaries sent to Venezuela by Russia to protect dictator Nicolas Maduro could have flown directly to Caracas. Instead, they had to stop first in Cuba to no doubt meet with and receive instructions from Maduro’s puppet masters in Havana.

Vanesa Vallejo reports in PanAm Post:

Russian Mercenaries in Venezuela: Nothing We Can’t Handle

This Friday, January 25, Reuters published a report affirming that three sources confirmed to the news agency that mercenaries who carry out secret missions for the Russian government, have traveled to Venezuela in recent days to “reinforce the security” of Nicolás Maduro.

Regarding the number of mercenaries currently in Venezuela, the article states that “Yevgeny Shabayev, leader of a local chapter of a Cossack paramilitary group with links to Russian military contractors, said he had heard that the number of Russian contractors in Venezuela could be about 400.” The agency notes that other sources speak of smaller groups.

Reuters also reveals that the contractors are associated with the Wagner group, whose members fought clandestinely in support of Russian forces in Syria and Ukraine. One of the sources said that the contingent flew to Venezuela at the beginning of last week, “one or two days before the opposition protests began,” but apparently the first time that the Russian mercenaries touched down on Venezuelan soil was for the 2018 elections.

In addition, according to the information given by one of the sources, Cuba is also involved. The mercenaries left Russia on two charter planes bound for Cuba, and subsequently flew on regular commercial flights to Venezuela. Specifically, the mission of these men is to protect Maduro from any attack from opposition sympathizers infiltrated into his own security forces.

Finally, the agency notes that flight tracking data, publicly available, shows that several Russian government aircraft landed in or near Venezuela in recent weeks. For example, a Russian Ilyushin-96 flew to Havana on Wednesday night.

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