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Venezuela Intercepts Two U.S. Drug Trafficking Planes

At dawn on Monday a U.S. registered plane used for drug trafficking was intercepted and seized, said the Minister of People's Power for Interior and Justice Tareck El Aissami.

The minister noted that the plane, which had come from Central America, illegally entered Venezuelan airspace and refused to communicate with Venezuelan air traffic controllers. It was immediately intercepted and forced to land, he explained.

“This plane was used specifically for the trafficking of cocaine. The U.S. accuses us of drug trafficking, but this is a plane registered in the U.S. Additionally, it is the U.S. that has blocked Venezuelan purchases of equipment that could be used in the fight against drug trafficking,” said the minister.

El Aissami similarly indicated that on January 2 another U.S.-registered plane used for drug trafficking, a model King 200, was intercepted and seized.

The minister emphasized that Venezuela’s increased capacity to fight drug trafficking had allowed government authorities to intercept these two planes in just the first 10 days of 2010. “Today our Bolivarian Armed Forces and various state institutions are stronger than they were before. This puts Venezuela as an example to the world in fighting drug trafficking,” he said.

El Aissami added that so far in 2010 some 1,400 pounds of illegal drugs have been seized by Venezuelan authorities in various anti-drug operations.

Photo: ABN

Bolivarian News Agency , Embassy of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela Press and Communications Office / January 12, 2010

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