(Persia Digest) – Former Iranian Ambassador to Venezuela believes: “If the United States succeeds in its interventionist policies in an important OPEC country, in addition to taking over the world’s energy power, it will continue the trend in other countries. Thus, developments in Venezuela are very important for Iran.”

Mohsen Baharvand, Head of the Latin American Desk at Iran’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, has traveled to Moscow for discussions with Russia on Venezuela. It is said that Iran intends to gather round countries opposed to US unilateralism and its actions against Venezuela which are not in line with the United Nations Charter.

Why are developments in Venezuela important to Iran?

Former Iranian Ambassador to Venezuela and former Head of the Latin American Desk at Iran’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ahmad Sobhani, told Persia Digest (PD): “Iran and Venezuela are among the founding members of OPEC which are still partners and share the same views on the oil sector. This has also been effective in aligning their political positions in recent years. They are also on good economic terms for non-oil commodities, although this has declined in recent years due to a variety of reasons.”

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He continued: “Presently, the US is intervening in an oil rich country simply for its resources. If this wounded, declining monster wants to intervene in independent countries by force, it will endanger the entire international community and Iran is endeavoring to stop Washington in this process. The united approach of countries like Turkey, Russia, and China to some extent, is very important in this respect.”

Sobhani reiterated: “The Venezuelan government has transferred its oil accounts to Russia from Europe and the United States to protect itself, and now the Russians stand firmly against American plans. Under the circumstances, Iran's political consultations are important to Moscow.”

Former Head of the Latin American Desk at Iran’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs stated: “Venezuela is facing a crisis and food shortages. Restarting such exports will not only provide support for this country’s government, it is also a golden opportunity for Iran. Venezuela is a rich country. Apart from oil, it has iron ore, diamond, gold, and other mineral mines. In return for exports to this country, Iran can be paid in cash or other such commodities.”

He continued: “This country is also facing medicine shortages and Iran has pharmaceuticals ready for export. Therefore, together with political support and discussions with Russia to reach political solutions, increased exports to Venezuela will also provide support for its government against American interventionism.”

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In answer to the question of whether the crisis in Venezuela will divert US focus from Iran, he said: “It is not right for Iran to be happy about a crisis in another country. Venezuela has stood by Iran and its friends during the hard times. This country is now being bullied by the US and authorities in Washington have shed their masks for direct intervention in Venezuela. If they are successful in this country, they will continue on this path in other countries.”

Sobhani stressed: “Venezuela has the world’s largest oil reserves in the world. If the US succeeds in toppling its government, it will take over the world’s energy power together with its own shale oil and the oil of its allies. This is very dangerous for all independent countries in the world.”

Commenting on the possibility of Iranian military advice to Venezuela, as in Syria, if the crisis continues, he said: “Venezuela has no problems in military terms to need our help. But advisors can work in other areas such as medicine, foodstuffs, agriculture, monetary policies, and the reconstruction of the oil and mining sectors. Because, the Cubans were able to help Venezuela in these sectors although it did not have extensive experiences.”

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