Venezuela Reiterates Commitment to Multipolar World Following Israeli Accusations

A
supposedly secret report by the Israeli Foreign Affairs Ministry, which accuses
the Bolivian and Venezuelan governments of selling uranium to Iran for its
nuclear program, has been leaked to Associated Press. Venezuela has responded
by reiterating its support for all cooperation agreements it has with Iran and by
criticizing media's constant demonization of its government.
By Tamara Pearson – Venezuelanalysis.com

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Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad greets Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez (YVKE archive)
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad greets Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez (YVKE archive)
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Mérida,
May 27th 2009 (Venezuelanalysis.com) - A supposedly secret report by the
Israeli Foreign Affairs Ministry, which accuses the Bolivian and Venezuelan
governments of selling uranium to Iran for its nuclear program, has been leaked
to Associated Press. Venezuela has responded by reiterating its support for all
cooperation agreements it has with Iran and by criticizing media's constant
demonization of its government.

Israel
and the United States accuse Iran of using uranium to develop nuclear weapons,
while Iran says its nuclear program is for energy purposes only. The United
States is the only country to have ever used nuclear weapons (on Japan at the
end of World War II). According to the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists, the U.S.
currently has a stockpile of 5,535 nuclear weapons, while Israel is reported to
have 60-400 nuclear weapons, although it refuses to confirm or deny this.

Israel
wrote the three page report for the meeting of the Organisation of American States
(OAS) next week. The private media in Venezuela, Bolivia, Spain, and
internationally have used the report to massively circulate headlines such as "Venezuela
and Bolivia Sell Uranium to Iran."

The
report quotes Israeli intelligence documents alleging that Bolivia and
Venezuela are providing Iran with uranium, but does not say where the uranium comes
from. According to the Jewish news agency JTA, the report said that Bolivia has
uranium deposits and that Venezuela has an estimated "50,000 tons of untapped
uranium reserves that reportedly it is not mining currently."

Associated
Press cited a report published in December by the Carnegie Endowment for International
Peace which suggests that Venezuela's recent collaboration with Iran in the
creation of joint mining companies "has generated speculation that Venezuela
could mine uranium for Iran."

Associated
Press said the report accuses Venezuela of issuing permits that allow Iranians
to travel freely in South America, and concludes that Venezuelan President Hugo
Chavez is trying to undermine the United States by supporting Iran and that
Venezuela and Bolivia are violating the United Nations Security Council's
economic sanctions with their aid to Iran.

The
Venezuelan radio station YVKE called the Israeli report "a new attack by the
Israeli government against progressive South American nations who maintain
strong bonds of friendship and cooperation with Iran."

YVKE
quoted Israeli Vice Minister for Foreign Affairs, Danny Ayalon, who wrote the
document, as saying after the leak, "We see a strategic alliance between Chavez
and [Iranian president] Ahmadinejad, and this is something very dangerous
because it undermines stability... in the whole world." He continued, "I suppose
the responsible countries won't allow such a strategic alliance to continue... if
[Venezuela, Bolivia, and Iran] aren't stopped they'll have a very powerful
capacity to foment terrorism and to kill people."

The
Israeli army has killed at least 2000 Palestinians since 2005, according to
United Nations statistics.

Chávez
has consistently advocated new regional and international organizations that
promote peace and are not dominated by the U.S. In an interview with Iranian TV
in 2007, Chávez explained that before he was elected, the Venezuelan government
didn't have control over its foreign policies, which "were dictated by
Washington."

"Today
we are independent and have developed a completely independent policy, total
sovereignty. We regard our relations with Russia, Belarus and Iran as
fundamental and important," Chavez said.

Chavez
last visited Iran in April this year, when the two countries opened a joint
bank and deepened their bilateral cooperation in areas of food, energy,
education, culture, science and technology. They also discussed the creation of
joint mining companies. Chavez said during the visit, "We, the countries of the
South, need to create some transnational companies that unite us, to confront
the power of the transnationals of capitalism."

In
response to the report and the media coverage of it, Venezuelan legislator
Mario Isea reiterated the Venezuelan National Assembly's unconditional support for
all the projects and agreements that Venezuela has with Iran and also urged
that Venezuela deepen its energy cooperation with Iran.

Isea
said he saw the report and its coverage by the press as a new offensive meant to
"demonize the relations between Iran and Venezuela," and emphasized the
Venezuelan government's commitment to promoting a "multipolar world based on
solidarity and cooperation."

Chavez,
speaking from Brazil where he is meeting with the Brazilian president, Luiz
Lula, said, "They accuse our government of things all the time - that we're a
drug smuggling paradise, that we protect terrorists..." Then Chavez invited the
leaders of the Union of South American Nations (UNASUR) to create institutions
that put out reports that "aren't subjugated to the interests of the major
powers... so that we can have our own voice."

Chavez
said, "Enough with the North condemning us and... putting us against the wall."

A
Bolivian presidential minister, Juan Quintana, called the report a "barbarity"
and assured that the Bolivian government is not selling Iran uranium. He said
Bolivia's relationship with Iran is "totally transparent" and involves
industrialization projects.

"To
what confused person could it occur that Bolivia is developing technology or is
promoting and cooperating with the nuclear development of Iran? We're scarcely
starting to get basic industry going," Quintana concluded.

The
Bolivian mining director, Freddy Beltran, said that Bolivia did have reserves
of uranium but they aren't being mined.

Both
Bolivia
and Venezuela
cut diplomatic ties with Israel
at the end of last year and the beginning of this year in response to Israel's war on
the Gaza Strip.