The Russian government has been mum on how long two nuclear-capable strategic bombers will stay in Venezuela as Secretary of State Mike Pompeo decried the collaboration between “two corrupt governments.”
Russia’s Defense Ministry on Monday announced that a pair of Tu-160 bombers landed at an airport outside Caracas. The ministry didn’t reveal whether the bombers– which flew over 6,000 miles to reach the socialist country– carried any weapons. An An-124 heavy military transport plane and an Il-62 long-haul plane also arrived in Venezuela.
The Tu-160 bombers were deployed in Russia’s campaign in Syria where they employed conventionally-armed Kh-101 cruise missiles. But the bombers are also capable of carrying nuclear-tipped cruise missiles with a range of 3,410 miles.
Pompeo criticized the move by Russia, issuing a short and a scathing statement on social media.
“#Russia’s government has sent bombers halfway around the world to #Venezuela. The Russian and Venezuelan people should see this for what it is: two corrupt governments squandering public funds, and squelching liberty and freedom while their people suffer,” he wrote in a tweet.
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