After supplying the Maduro regime with military equipment and a contingent of one hundred soldiers, Russia has now begun to provide food for the Venezuelan army, which remains the only thing keeping Nicolas Maduro in power.
A high-ranking source in the Russian Defense Ministry informed TASS that the Venezuelan Armed Forces would be receiving more than 16,000 field rations from Russia.
On Thursday, Rosoboronexport, the Russian state defense export agency, posted information on the procurement of special rations that are to be supplied to Venezuela. The initial contract price is 14.38 million rubles (around $223,000).
“The delivery will be made to the Venezuelan army,” a source noted.
The requirements specification posted by Rosoboronexport on the government procurements website states that the shipment will be done as “humanitarian assistance to the government of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela”. The field rations will be sent to a client in Puerto Cabello.
Russia could soon expand its military presence in Venezuela, said Venezuelan Deputy Foreign Minister Ivan Gil in April after a visit to Moscow.
In addition to the contingent of 100 Russian soldiers that was deployed in Caracas at the end of March, “new missions will probably arrive,” Gil said.
The Venezuelan diplomat explained that there is no specific duration to the contingent’s stay in the country. “The group of military specialists is here as part of our military and technological cooperation agreements and contracts, as already mentioned. They will be here as long as necessary,” Gil explained.
The deputy minister observed that Venezuela-Russia relations are now “extremely intensive”. Over the next few months, Caracas will send its ministers of oil, defense and economy to Moscow, and will expect “high level visits” from Russia in return.