WORLD Venezuela's Maduro leads military exercises

WORLD

Venezuela's Maduro leads military exercises

Xinhua

09:48, February 11, 2019

CARACAS, Feb. 10 (Xinhua) -- Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro led military exercises on Sunday, pledging to strengthen the country's anti-aircraft defensive system.

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This handout photo released by the Venezuelan Presidency press office shows President Nicolas Maduro (C) attending military exercises at Fort Guaicaipuro in Miranda state, Venezuela, on February 10, 2019. (Photos: VCG)

As part of the drill, Venezuelan air force troops at Guicaipuro Fort, in northern state of Miranda, deployed Russian-made 9M317 and Igla-S surface-to-air missiles.

The 9M317 is a medium-range missile that can hit targets up to 50 km away, while the Igla-S is a man-portable missile with a 6 km reach.

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This handout photo released by the Venezuelan Presidency press office shows President Nicolas Maduro (C) speaking next to Defense Minister Vladimir Padrino (L) during military exercises at Fort Guaicaiputo in Miranda state, Venezuela, on February 10, 2019. 

Maduro said he will make "the sufficient investment for Venezuela" to strengthen its anti-aircraft and anti-missile defense system, and equip the militia with "even the most modern missiles in the world."

"These Igla-S and the thousands and thousands coming will be in the hands of the people, armed for anti-aircraft and anti-missile defense, to make our cities and towns impenetrable," he added.

The militia is a civilian force founded in 2008 to supplement the armed forces.

The military exercises, which mark the 200th anniversary of the historic Battle of Angostura, will continue through Friday. 

Cover image: Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro attends a military exercise in Charallave, Venezuela February 10, 2019. 

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