Russia and Venezuela boosted military ties on Saturday in an apparent sign of Moscow’s continued support for the South American nation amid a political crisis.

The development took place during a meeting between visiting Russian Deputy Prime Minister Yuri Borisov and Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro, Efe news reported.

The Venezuelan leader thanked Russia for the military cooperation between the two countries, saying his nation had a solid defence grid to resist any outside aggression.

He said that the two sides also renewed their agreements on the military-technical area during the meeting between the leaders.

The two presidents were said to have discussed Caracas’ sovereign debt of $3 billion to Moscow which has acted as a lender of last resort for the South American nation.

The Russian Ministry of Finance confirmed to the RIA Novosti agency that Venezuela was up to date on the payment of its debt and that it recently made another payment.

Maduro, who is not recognized as a legitimate President by 60 countries, including the US, thanked Putin for his support.

The Venezuelan military attache in Moscow also confirmed the Russian troop deployment, saying they were there for “discussion of military-technical cooperation”.

Maduro, who is not recognized as a legitimate President by 60 countries, including the US, thanked Putin for his support.

He said he was facing “imperial aggression”, referring to the sanctions imposed on him by several countries.

(With agency inputs)