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Iran Is Helping Venezuela To Form Popular Mobilization Force

Former Chief-Commander of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps, Major General Yahya Rahim Safavi

The former Chief-Commander of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps, Major General Yahya Rahim Safavi, says Iran is helping Venezuela to form a mobilization force.

Safavi says that the process is "transferring Iran's experience" during its eight-year war with Iraq between 1980-88 to countries like Venezuela that are "standing against the US."

The Popular Mobilization Force is an IRGC subdivision used to help the Special Units and the police suppress the social uprising against the religious establishment in Iran.

Without elaborating on the body assigned to transfer the experience, Safavi told the state-run Mehr News Agency, "Iran is providing Caracas with 'software,' and teaching Venezuelans how to repel Cyberattacks."

Safavi also claimed that Iran is receiving money for its aid to other countries such as Syria, Iraq, and Venezuela.

Referring to the Iranian gasoline recently sold to Venezuela, Safavi claimed, "We gave gasoline to Venezuela and received gold bars, and carried the bars to Iran by plane, to avoid any mishap on the way."

Earlier in May, US government officials shared that the Iranian government would receive gold in exchange for imported Iranian gasoline and rebuilding Venezuela's refinery facilities.

In a tweet on May 1, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo referred to the shipment of nine tons of gold bars from Venezuela to Iran, asserting that the deal was a partnership between "the world's biggest thieves" and "the biggest sponsor of terrorism."

Announcing new batches of sanctions on the Iran Ministry of Defense, Secretary Pompeo declared on September 21, "We're also sanctioning the previous president of Venezuela, Nicolas Maduro. For nearly two years, corrupt officials in Tehran had worked with the illegitimate regime in Venezuela to flout the U.N. arms embargo."