A Turkish private jet landed in Venezuela on Wednesday causing suspicion that it might take President Nicholas Madura out of the country.
The Gulfstream G550 type aircraft, which is seen in Flight Aware, first departed from Istanbul Atatürk Airport on 22 January and landed on the Moscow Vnukovo airport on 23 January.
The private jet with the tail number of TCTTC belongs to Turkish billionaire Turgay Ciner, owner of the Ciner Group.
Afterwards, the jet took off from Moscow and reached Venezuela’s International Simon Bolivar Airport, located 23 kilometres away from the capital Caracas, on 23 January.
“At 7:30 PM, TC-TTC private jet landed in Maiquetía Simón Bolívar airport. The plane took off from Moscow at 2.30 pm [local time]. The question is: Are you coming to fetch or find someone?” Venezuelan journalist @FedericoBlackB tweeted last noon.
A las 7:30pm (hora Vzla) aterrizó en Maiquetía una aeronave Gulfstream 5 matrícula TC-TTC (Rusia) proveniente de Moscow.
El avión despegó a las 2:30pm hora local Moscow (7am Vzla).
La pregunta: ¿viene a traer o a buscar a alguien? pic.twitter.com/QWmjnj6xnm
— Federico Black B. (@FedericoBlackB) January 24, 2019
Venezuela’s National Assembly head, Juan Guaido, backed by U.S. President Donald Trump, self-declared his presidency. President Maduro cut all relations with Washington. Brazil, Colombia and Peru along with some other South American countries have also recognised Mr Guaido as Venezuela’s legitimate president.
Turkey bought two Gulfstream G550 type aircraft for President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Army Chief in 2010.
The flight of private jet keeps its mystery
Maduro joined Erdogan’s presidential oath-taking ceremony in the last July and said that he wanted to refine gold in Turkey.
Following Maduro’s talks with Erdogan, Venezuelan Mining Minister, Victor Cano, said last year that due to international sanctions imposed on the country they want to switch gold refining from Switzerland to Turkey.
Venezuela’s Vice President Tareck Zaidan El Aissami Maddah visited a gold refinery in Turkey’s Black Sea region province of Çorum just a week ago (about 629 km east of İstanbul) where tons of Venezuelan gold are expected to be processed.
Erdogan Shocked by Trump’s Call on Maduro to Resign
Turkish President Erdogan commented on the situation in Venezuela in a press conference with Maltese President Marie-Louise Coleiro Preca the saying that unlike European states, Maduro supported Turkish government during 15 July coup attempt. Erdogan said that Maduro is a democratically elected President and the world must respect him and affirmed he will stand with Maduro. “I was shocked by President Trump’s call,” Erdogan said.