Although Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez has offered to mediate an eventual peace negotiation for the Libyan crisis, as the Spanish court keeps providing clear evidence that the Venezuelan President sponsors terrorist groups such as ETA and the FARC, which are responsible for killings, kidnappings and plots to kill former Colombian President Alvaro Uribe, among others, it is becoming clear to the International community, especially in Europe, that Hugo Chavez cannot be considered a serious mediator to stop the Libyan massacres or any other crisis.
Recently, Chavez's his credibility and credentials have been even more undermined: a Spanish court has just indicted a Venezuelan high official as being a leading figure of the Basque terror organization ETA.
Spanish Judge Eloy Velasco, of the Spanish National Court, is investigating whether the ETA cooperated with the FARC (Colombian Revolutionary Armed Forces), and whether this alliance was sponsored by the Venezuelan government. In a video-conference with judge Velasco, two ex-FARC guerrillas, admitted that they had been trained by ETA members between 2002 and 2008 in the Venezuelan forest and Colombia. The training was in the preparation of explosives, car and motorcycle bombs, the use of watches and mobile phones as timers, and detonating various types of explosives (R2, TNT and C4).
Top ETA terrorist leaders find safe haven in Venezuela
Velasco ordered the prosecution of ETA member Arturo Cubillas Fontan, head of security at the National Lands Institute (INTI), an agency attached to the Venezuelan Ministry of Agriculture and Lands. Cubillas, who was born in Spain, has lived in Venezuela since 1989. According to the investigation, Cubillas had a constant, permanent and direct relationship -- at least between 2004 and 2008 -- with ETA's leadership, and has coordinated and executed directive duties, such as training and weapons' improvement, and terrorist techniques. Further, Cubillas - against whom an arrest warrant was already issued in 1985 for murder charges - is accused of being the leader of the group on the American continent.
The list of ETA refugees in Venezuela is not closed. Last week, the Spanish magazine Tiempo revealed that the veteran gunman, José Luis Eciolaza Galán, alias "Dienteputo," who is presently the topmost leader of ETA, has also been hiding in Venezuela at least for the last year. According to the Spanish Ministry of Interior, Eciolaza Galán is still guiding the military apparatus of the terrorist organization, and fled to Venezuela where apparently he can enjoy "a certain degree of impunity" in an environment in which he and his kind can thrive dedicating themselves to "training, logistics and communication duties."
According to former Ambassador to the United Nations, Diego Arria, who became the first Venezuelan deposed on alleged links between ETA and the FARC, Cubillas and other ETA terrorists managed to carry out activities such as training, provided they could count on the support of Venezuelan military forces.
The "Yankee's plot"
Venezuela reacted strongly to the case. "The Venezuelan government found out about it the ruling by way of the [Spanish] press coverage of the ruling, in which it makes unacceptable, politically motivated allusions to the Venezuelan government," a statement read. The statement also said the ruling made several disrespectful references to Chavez, and unfounded and tendentious allusions about the Venezuelan government.
On previous occasions, Chavez declared that these accusations are part of plot in which "on one side you have the 'Royal' Spanish Judiciary and on the other hand you have Washington… Everything is orchestrated. And, behind this, there is the Yankee Empire, obviously."