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Venezuela: Opposition chief Guaido says Iran likely key destination for smuggled uranium

i24NEWS

clock 2 min read

Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido gestures while speaking during a press conference at the Los Palos Grandes square in Caracas on March 3, 2021.
YURI CORTEZ / AFPVenezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido gestures while speaking during a press conference at the Los Palos Grandes square in Caracas on March 3, 2021.

'There is a large reservoir of uranium in Venezuela that is smuggled from the country,' Guaido cited as saying

Venezuelan opposition chief Juan Guaido, recognized by Israel as the country's interim president, told Israel Hayom that he suspects that Iran is a major destination for Venezuelan uranium smugglers.

"It is public knowledge that several members of the military have been arrested after smuggling uranium from Venezuela, and we believe Iran is one of the main destinations," he told the newspaper in an interview published on Sunday.

"There is a large reservoir of uranium in Venezuela that is smuggled from the country somehow, through illegal channels," he said.

"At present, a preliminary investigation exists into uranium stockpiles in Venezuela and the countries to which this material could be sent," the opposition figurehead added.

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Guaido, who was declared Acting President by the National Assembly in 2019, emerged as a key rival to the country's President Nicolas Maduro, whose regime is mired in corruption, crime and violence.

Maduro and some of his key allies are wanted in the US on charges of setting up a massive drug operation called Cartel of The Suns.

The Maduro regime has long been linked with Iran, accepting oil shipments from the Islamic Republic, some of those seized by the United States under the sanctions against Tehran.

"The Maduro dictatorship allowed Iran to enter. It started when [Hugo] Chavez began welcoming companies under sanctions by the US and other countries," Guaido told Israel Hayom.

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