Venezuela’s Main Air Force Base Attacked by Group of Irregulars, according to VP

Vice-president José Vicente Rangel claims that a group of heavily armed men wearing sky masks, tried last Monday to break into the Liberator Air Force Base, which houses Venezuela's F-16 figthers.

Caracas, Nov 26 ( A group of heavily armed men wearing sky masks exchanged fire shots with Venezuelan Air Force personnel after they illegally broke into the Libertador Air Base in the city of Maracay, located 80 km from the capital city of Caracas.

Libertador is the most important Air Force base in Venezuela, as it houses more airplanes than any other base in the country, including Venezuela’s F-16 jet fighters.

According to Vice-president José Vicente Rangel, who informed the public about the incident, the group composed of approximately 5 men, used UZI-style machineguns to attack the guards who detected their illegal presence. They later managed to escape.

“They crossed a barrier, there was an exchange of fire and they later escaped,” said the Vice-president.

Rangel described the incident as “an act of provocation”, and added that the authorities initiated “a thorough investigation of the incident. No wounded or deaths were reported.

“We are well prepared. What happened in April of the 2002 [during the coup d’etat that overthrew President Hugo Chavez] will not be repeated in Venezuela. We are democrats, we respected the Constitution and the Law, but we do not accept any provocations or acts that threaten the constitutional regime”, added Rangel.

In early November, Venezuela’s scientific police seized several arsenals of weapons that presumably were going to be used by opposition militants during the upcoming petition drives to recall several public officials, including President Chavez.

Recently, a prominent opposition group made a public call to civil disobedience and to overthrow the government.

Prominent opposition leaders were recently caught on tape planning destabilizing actions and describing their desire to impose up to 15 years of dictatorship when President Chavez is overthrown.

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