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Venezuelan arms maker to continue Iran trade despite US bans

Press TV – February 17, 2013

Venezuelan officials say the state-owned weapons manufacturer, CAVIM, will keep on trading with Iran in defiance of the US sanctions imposed on the company, Press TV reports.

“We think that it is logical for Venezuela to have trade and economic relations with all countries in the world. We are exercising our sovereignty,” Venezuelan Envoy to international rights bodies German Saltron said.

“We feel it is an abuse of power that the United States’ government is trying to block Iran from trading with other countries,” he added.

On February 11, the US State Department imposed sanctions on CAVIM allegedly for violating the so-called Iran Nonproliferation Act of 2000, which aims to prevent Tehran from acquiring weapons of mass destruction.

According to the US State Department website, sanctions on the Venezuelan weapons manufacturer will be in place until February 2015.

The US, the Israeli regime and some of their allies have repeatedly accused Iran of seeking to produce an atomic bomb under the cover of its nuclear energy program, a claim Iran has categorically rejected.

In 2011, Washington imposed sanctions on Venezuela’s state-owned giant oil company, PDVSA, for having oil deals with Iran’s energy industry and as part of its campaign to tighten sanctions on the Islamic Republic over its nuclear energy program.

Under the sanctions, PDVSA is denied US government contracts and banned from Washington’s export financing.

The administration of President Barack Obama is alleging that Iran is using its close economic relationship with Socialist President Hugo Chavez’s government to establish a military presence in Latin America.

In December 2012, the US president enacted a law “aimed at countering Tehran’s alleged influence in Latin America.”

Strategically dubbed as ‘Countering Iran in the Western Hemisphere Act of 2012’, the act calls for the State Department to develop a plan within 180 days to “address Iran’s growing hostile presence and activity.”

However, Iran and Venezuela have continued to expand their trade ties despite these sanctions.

More than 100 bilateral agreements have been signed between the two countries over the past decade, while last year Iranian firms signed a USD2.5 billion contract to build 17,000 houses for underprivileged people in Venezuela.

The Islamic Republic has been seeking to expand relations with Latin American countries over the past years, describing the endeavor as one of its major foreign policy strategies.

Iran’s growing popularity in Latin America has raised major concerns in Washington, which regards the region as its strategic backyard and traditional sphere of influence.

February 17, 2013 - Posted by | Economics, Progressive Hypocrite | , , , ,

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