Now, THIS is a red carpet welcome!
Putin visit to Caracas consolidates bilateral ties. Photo: Miraflores Press
Venezuela and Russia signed 31 bilateral cooperation agreements on Friday in the framework of Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin’s first visit to Caracas
By: Juana Carrasco Martín
2010-04-03 | 12:53:26 EST
CARACAS.— Venezuela and Russia signed 31 bilateral cooperation agreements on Friday in the framework of Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin’s first visit to Caracas.
After a meeting at the Miraflores Palace, Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez and Putin signed two joint declarations. One, on occasion of the 200th anniversary of the declaration of Latin American independence, where they recognize and salute the steps towards integration being taken in the region such as the ALBA and UNASUR mechanisms, as well as the celebration of the Foundational Summit of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States to be held in Venezuela in 2012. And a second document issued for the 65th anniversary of the defeat of fascism that pays tribute to the victims of the World War II.
Vladimir Putin arrived in Venezuela on Friday morning. After his arrival, Putin, accompanied by Chavez, visited the Russian Navy’s Kruzenshtern training ship that is anchored in the La Guaira port.
Following, Putin paid tribute to Latin American Liberator Simon Bolivar at the National Pantheon and along with Chavez presided over the signing of the bilateral cooperation agreements, resulting from the Seventh Intergovernmental High Level Meeting between Russia and Venezuela held on Wednesday in Caracas.
The agreements come under the energy, agriculture, transportation, education, culture, fishing, security and protection, infrastructure and healthcare sectors, and in the areas of maritime transportation of gas and oil, and the Moscow-Caracas air link.
The Venezuelan National Assembly recently approved the creation of a joint venture for oil exploitation in the Orinoco Oil Belt with an initial Russian investment of US$ 18 billion, and after his meeting with Putin, Chavez said that the two countries are discussing a program for developing atomic energy in Venezuela.
“We are going to develop nuclear atomic energy for pacific purposes; we have to get ready for the post-oil era,” said Chavez.
The Venezuelan president also spoke about the possibility of a space cooperation project between the two nations.
During the ceremony, Vladimir Putin said that Simon Bolivar continues to be a living example for the struggle of many Latin American countries against injustice and inequality. “Our objective is to make a more democratic, balanced and multi-polar world with the participation and safety guaranteed for all —said Putin—; in this context, Russia and Venezuela cooperation takes on great significance.”
Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez thanked Putin for Russia’s invaluable support of Venezuela’s Bolivarian project, and presented him with the Liberator’s Order and a replica of the Liberator’s sword.
Before the beginning of the ceremony, Chavez received Bolivian President Evo Morales, who also met with Putin.