Venezuela’s Military Condemns Opposition’s Call for Coup

Orinoco Tribune, August 25, 2023 —

The Bolivarian National Armed Force (FANB) of Venezuela has condemned the call for a coup recently made by extreme-right politicians. In a message to the nation, broadcast on national TV, the minister of Defense, Vladimir Padrino López, stated that the FANB’s fundamental role is to protect the nation, as mandated by the Constitution.

“The FANB has a constitutional role to fulfill,” said Defense Minister Padrino López. “No one can make use of the Armed Forces for such purposes. We reiterate that the FANB is here, ready and willing, to provide security for free and fair elections, with the greatest expression of national peace.”

Recently, hard-right opposition politician and fugitive from the Venezuelan judicial system, Antonio Ledezma, stated to foreign media that the opposition leader María Corina Machado will seek to provoke civil disobedience and a military insurrection in the country.

In response to these statements, the Venezuelan attorney general, Tarek William Saab, announced on Monday, August 21, that an arrest warrant had been issued against Ledezma, on the charges of “calling for death” and inciting infighting among Venezuelans.

Padrino López expressed the willingness of the FANB to guarantee peace in the nation, in view of the upcoming elections. He added that FANB personnel will be deployed in all voting centers to provide security during the electoral process.

“We are going to act in any troublesome circumstance that may arise, so we expect the actions of the FANB to be within the civic framework, because election is a civic act,” the minister said. “The FANB is going to act in a civic and united manner.”

López subsequently read a statement recalling that since 2014, approximately 20 coup plots against the nation and against the president of Venezuela and commander-in-chief of the FANB, Nicolás Maduro, have been foiled by national security and intelligence services.

“It is obvious that the imperialist pack and its subordinate allies, both internally within Venezuela and externally, are resuming with greater impetus their well-known script of interference, interventionism, incitement to hatred, and above all, the manipulation of the media through the fabrication of fake news and the dissemination of biased news, among other perverse mechanisms,” the text read, “with an objective of polarizing and fragmenting the society again, in view of the coming presidential elections.”

The FANB also asserted that “it will not allow society to fall into polarizing and violent provocations orchestrated by those who wish to subject us to scenarios of terror, anguish, and unrest.”

“We reiterate the call for peace, harmony, dialogue, and reunion,” the statement concluded, “that will allow us to lead our beautiful and beloved nation along a splendorous path of prosperity, harmony, and greatness, preserving the inalienable right of our people to be free, sovereign, and independent.”

The commanders of the Strategic Region of Integral Defense (REDI) also ratified their support for President Nicolás Maduro and their commitment to peace in each one of their territories to provide security for every citizen.

“We are the sons of Bolívar and Chávez, we are devoted to the defense of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela regardless of the vicissitudes we have to face,” stated the commander of REDI Capital, Major General Johan Alexander Hernández Lárez. “We belong to a professional military of the state. Our commitment is to safeguard the independence and sovereignty of the nation, and ensure the integrity of the nation through military defense, cooperation, maintenance of internal order, and active participation in national development.”

He also pointed out that REDI participated in the Cacique Maracay Operation against narcotrafficking gangs, as well as in all the protection operations in the border regions, with active participation in the military community health and education brigades (Bricomiles).

“My Commander-in-Chief Nicolás Maduro Moros counts on all the soldiers of this integral defense region to support the people and the government in its daily effort to achieve stability and peace in our beloved homeland,” the major general said. “We are working with fortitude, constancy, and sacrifice in resistance and revolution for the rebirth of the homeland, to the fulfillment of our military duties to consecrate the homeland of Guaicaipuro, Bolívar, and Chávez, guaranteeing the greatest possible sum of social happiness for our people, as well as the political stability and economic recovery of the nation in socialism.”

The commander of REDI Central, Major General Orlando Ramón Romero Bolívar, of Aragua state, announced, “We raise our voices from Aragua, Carabobo, and Yaracuy to express our unwavering support as soldiers of the homeland. We are guarantors of sovereignty, unity, and peace.”

“Our oath to defend sovereignty territorial integrity and democracy guides us to every action under the leadership of President Nicolás Maduro,” he added. “We have witnessed your firmness and determination to safeguard our fundamental principles, facing internal and external actions with courage and effectiveness.”

“Today, on behalf of every man and woman of REDI Central, we reaffirm our commitment of loyalty and support to our Constitutional President Nicolás Maduro Moros,” the commander said, emphasizing that “we are ready to defend democracy, social justice, and the rights of our people.”

He further noted that they will not allow foreign interests to disturb the peace and security of the country. “The REDI, in perfect civic-military union, remains active participating throughout the national territory, in all operations carried out to protect and defend our homeland,” he said.


Likewise, the commander of REDI West, Admiral Alejandro Rafael Díaz Espinosa, expressed his support for President Nicolás Maduro, “who is currently facing one of the most criminal wars and economic blockades of all time, driven by the interests of the imperialist countries and their devices.”

He stated that the current times demand greater commitment and initiatives to develop methods to confront these vicissitudes and safeguard the independence and sovereignty of the nation, ensuring the integrity of the geographical territory through defense, cooperation, and maintenance of internal order and active participation in national development.

“We have carried out the operation Relámpago del Catatumbo and Cacique Manaure,” he noted, “and destroyed 49 clandestine tracks, as well as seized 104 tons of strategic material, 14,799 kilograms of marijuana, 29,915 kilograms of cocaine, and destroyed eight illegal mining groups.”

“We proclaim our loyalty, obedience, discipline, and absolute allegiance to the Constitutional President of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, Nicolás Maduro, commander-in-chief of the FANB,” he highlighted.

The commander of REDI East, Major General Juan Ernesto Sulbaran Quintero, expressed that “the men and women of the FANB’s territorial defense system express our categorical and irrefutable repudiation for the infamous statements of opposition figures, who, acting as puppets under the protection of the US empire and its grotesque and repeated interventionism, call for insubordination of the army and violence in the country.”

He further expressed that the REDI East, as “a firm and cohesive fundamental piece of the territorial defense system of the glorious, undefeated and dignified FANB, in perfect harmony with the constitutional precepts enshrined in our Constitution, is officially ready for combat without hesitation or reservations to safeguard the sovereignty of the homeland, making it impregnable and free from any internal or external threat or from invasive pressures that destabilize the peace and internal order of the Republic.”

He took the opportunity to mention that the members of the REDI East ratify the “evidently Bolivarian, anti-imperialist, and deeply Chavista character of the military institution, heir to the glory of Bolívar and Chávez and the heroes who gave us our homeland and freedom. As such, we will continue to be guarantors of democracy, without disregarding the Constitution and the laws of the Republic.”

Similarly, the commander of the REDI Los Andes, Major General Manuel Enrique Castillo Rengifo, stated that the FANB is a professional force, organized by the state to safeguard the independence and sovereignty of the nation, always in civic-military union in the homeland of Bolívar and Chávez.

The commander of the REDI Los Llanos, Major General Lenin Lorenzo Villasmil, highlighted the 200 years of battles fought during the independence process in the Venezuelan grasslands, and that today the FANB will continue defending the sovereignty of the territory in the same way.

“The FANB will continue working as it has been doing, hand in hand with the people, in perfect civic-military union,” he said. “We will continue with military honor, subordinate to the Bolivarian Constitution of Venezuela and our President Nicolás Maduro, in maintaining the peace.”

He emphasized that “the FANB will not allow any act of barbarism that attacks our people and its institutions. A country is not built with violence or resentment. We will not tolerate the violation of peace and sovereignty in this region of the plains.”

“This is a message of commitment and loyalty to our people of Venezuela; they should rest assured that they can count on our soldiers with constitutional principles,” he stated. “Rest assured that we will continue fighting for a free and independent sovereign nation that seeks peace, but remains prepared in arms for the defense of the territory.”

The commander of the REDI Guayana, Major General Rafael David Prieto Martínez, detailed that military operations are being carried out in Guara, Roraima, and Autana, by land, air, and water, where 624 motor pumps, 81 illegal mining camps, and 37,000 liters of fuel have been seized, in addition to the destruction of more than 18 tons of logistic supplies.

He reported that to date, 8,879 people who were illegally mining in the Yapacana National Park have been evacuated. In addition, the Bricomiles, in perfect civic-military union, are continuing their restoration works and conditioning of the educational institutions to provide wellbeing to all the people of the region.

“We tell the whole world that the REDI Guayana unit of the FANB will never accept orders from any foreign power or any authority that does not come from the sovereign decision of the people,” he stated. “We will remain deployed throughout the country in the fight against the terrorist and narco-trafficking groups and illegal mining gangs, for the maintenance of peace and tranquility of all Venezuelans.”

The commander of the Insular Maritime REDI, Admiral Ashraf Suleiman Gutierrez, said, “Today, all the members of this strategic region solemnly declare before the people of Venezuela our absolute loyalty and subordination to our Commander-in-Chief and Constitutional President of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, Nicolás Maduro and to the Bolivarian Socialist and Anti-imperialist Revolutionary process, chosen as a system of sovereign government by the people in legitimate and sovereign free elections.”

“As we are approaching an electoral process, pseudo ‘free actors’ appear, demagogues seeking to destabilize and subvert the people, following the same scripts of the hybrid war imposed by foreign powers and economic groups, especially from the United States of America, who only seek to satisfy their economic interests, to take over our resources using these lackeys who have left the democratic principle and have opted for the path of violence staining the streets with blood,” the admiral said. “We will not allow it.”

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