Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez and his state-owned oil company are sending large shipments of diesel fuel to Syria to power Damascus’ tanks and other military vehicles used in the ongoing crackdown on rebels.
The fuel deals have been negotiated between oil company Petroleos de Venezuela and Sytrol, Syria’s state oil-marketing firm, which is facing sanctions from the United States and the European Union.
Venezuela has sent four shipments of diesel to Syria in the last eight months, according to a report in Tuesday’s Wall Street Journal
, including a shipment of more than 30,000 tons in May.
Louay Sakkar of the Syrian Support Group, which is calling for greater aid for Syria’s rebels, called the diesel fuel “the lifeblood of the killing regime.”
Chavez has stated his intention of building an “anti-imperial” coalition of countries, including Syria, to fight what he calls American hegemony, according to the Journal.
In an August 2006 visit to Damascus, Chavez vowed to “dig the grave of U.S. imperialism.”
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