Venezuela upset about USCG penetrating their airspace…kinda
As reported by the English language Telesur, a U.S. Coast Guard Bombardier Dash 8 was detected in Venezuelan airspace on Sept. 16, during the Summit of the Non-Aligned Movement’s on Venezuela’s Margarita Island.
“An aircraft crossed our flight region without informing our control center,” said Venezuelan Defense Minister Vladimir Padrino in a press conference in Caracas Tuesday, adding that the craft appeared to be carrying out a surveillance flight while the NAM conference was underway.
The penetration was one of 32 recorded in the past year, some reported as close as 130 miles from the mainland.
The thing is, while the USCG has about 70 fixed wing aircraft including HC-130s Herky birds, HC-144A Ocean Sentries, C37A (G-5) VIP aircraft, and is adding some hand me down C-27Js, they just don’t have any Bombardiers.
The Dutch Caribbean Coast Guard, which patrols Statia, Aruba, Sint Maarten and Curaçao (the latter of these just 40 miles off Venezuela’s coast) does operate two unarmed Bombardier Dash 8 Maritime Patrol Aircraft (designated MPA-D8) for SAR and fisheries patrol.
U.S., Dutch, hey, we’re all alike when it comes to Venezuela.