- Published: Tuesday, 12 May 2020
Venezuelan dictator Nicolás Maduro sent an estimated nine tons of gold, worth around $500 million,
to the Iranian regime last month in a desperate attempt to stop the South American country from running out of gasoline, according to the Coordinator of the Campaign for Iran Change (CIC).
Struan Stevenson explained that the plummeting value of crude, the fleeing of many professionals, government corruption, and US sanctions have left Venezuela impoverished, so Maduro had to use his country’s last gold reserves to pay the mullahs.
He advised that, in the last week of April alone, six Mahan Airplanes, which are sanctioned by the US and run by the terrorist Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC), were seen landing and taking off from Simón Bolívar International Airport near Caracas.
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said: “These flights must stop, and countries should do their part to deny overflights just as many have already denied landing rights to this sanctioned airline.”
And Stevenson says Pompeo should be angry because this “unholy alliance” is “a threat to world peace”. After all, this money will not trickle down to the impoverished Iranians, but will be used in the same way that the Iranian regime has used any money since the 1979 revolution; terrorism, warfare, and suppression.
Stevenson, a former member of the European Parliament, wrote: “The mullahs will continue to divert vital resources to propping up Bashar al-Assad’s bloody civil war in Syria, backing the Houthi rebels in Yemen, the vicious Shi’ia militia in Iraq and the terrorist groups Hezbollah in Lebanon and Hamas in Gaza. Anything left will find its way into the pockets of the Ayatollahs, who match their Venezuelan chums for unprincipled corruption.”
He cites that the regime uses “its military thugs and even its diplomatic staff” to kill and injure civilians domestically and around the world. They executed at least 32 people last month, including political prisoners and juvenile offenders, in an attempt to downplay resentment over the regime’s disastrous response to the coronavirus crisis, especially in prisons where there is no social distancing, healthcare, or sanitary spaces.
Among those currently in prison and those exhibiting symptoms of the coronavirus - dry coughs, fevers, shivering, and diarrhea – are protesters arrested during the demonstrations against the downing of the Ukrainian airliner in January or the November protests against the gas price tripling, as well as those posting accurate information online about the spread of coronavirus in Iran.
Stevenson wrote: “The theocratic dictatorship is displaying all of the signs of a regime in terminal decline, terrified of a popular uprising and panicking about losing their grip on power. The fact that they must now rely on looted gold from Venezuela is a key symptom of their desperation.”
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