CARACAS, Wednesday January 19, 2011 | Update
Lula da Silva talked about the purchase of arms by Venezuela (Photo: Reuters)
Former Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva (2003-2011), was concerned about the possible purchase of Russian military aircrafts by Venezuela in 2005, as disclosed by whistleblower website WikiLeaks, reported Brazilian newspaper Folha de Sao Paulo.
According to a US secret diplomatic cable leaked by WikiLeaks, Lula told then US President George W. Bush (2001-2009) that he was concerned about a likely "power imbalance in South America," if Caracas purchased military aircrafts from Russia or from other countries rather than from Empresa Brasileña de Aeronáutica (Embraer), DPA reported.
At that time, Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez tried to purchase 20 Brazilian Super Tucano aircrafts to Embraer but the United States vetoed the transaction.
02:57 PM. HEAVY RAINS. Venezuelan Executive Vice-President Elias Jaua reported that the government is designing plans to support farmers, cattlemen and peasants of the state of Mérida who have been hit by heavy rains that have caused crop losses.