US imposes sanctions on Venezuela Supreme Court

Pauline Gross
May 19, 2017

At least 43 people have died during weeks of clashes between government forces and opposition demonstrators angry at President Nicolas Maduro's moves to strengthen his hold on power and his handling of an economic and political crisis.

The opposition has accused the government of violently repressing protests by Venezuelans demanding early elections to remove Maduro from power.

Perez Wednesday said Maduro had been given assurances by Stuart that "he will never act against the Venezuelan people".

Rejecting the U.S. action at United Nations, Venezuela accused the United States of meddling in its internal affairs.

The officials have denied the charges and called them a pretext as part of an effort to topple Maduro's government.

The U.S. Treasury department imposed new sanctions against Venezuelan Vice President Tareck El Aissami earlier this year, after accusing him of being involved in drug trafficking.

Ramirez stressed that Venezuela is not on the Security Council agenda and said many council members "disagree with the U.S." and back his government's position that it shouldn't be there.

Word of imminent new sanctions coincided with White House talks on Thursday between Trump and President Juan Manuel Santos of Colombia, Venezuela's neighbor.

As it was live-twitted by Delcy Rodriguez, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela.

The U.S. ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley warned on Wednesday that if the situation was left to escalate it could lead to a major global crisis like in Syria.

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In a state broadcast Tuesday night, President Nicolas Maduro criticized Venezuelan expatriates who have been yelling at Venezuelan officials in other countries, or who use social media to post photos of officials living it up overseas while the country struggles with triple-digit inflation and food shortages.

Uruguay's United Nations ambassador Elbio Rosselli, president of the Security Council for May, said that at this point Uruguay believed the Venezuelan crisis should be handled within the region. Maduro, the successor to late leader Hugo Chavez, says his foes are seeking a violent coup.

Henrique Capriles, one of the leaders of the Venezuelan opposition, said Thursday his passport was annulled when he was at the Maiquetia airport, ready to travel to the United Nations office in NY to report human rights violations during mass anti-government protests in Venezuela.

Britain's U.N. Ambassador Matthew Rycroft said it is "absolutely right" that the OAS and the 33-nation Community of Latin American and Caribbean States are taking the lead, "but it is also right that the Security Council, charged as we are on the maintenance of security and peace. keep a very close eye on the situation".

"I am outside the migration zone without my passport" at Maiquetia airport near Caracas, he said.

Maduro has accused the opposition of plotting a coup against him with U.S. backing.

Diapers have become prized products in Venezuela due to widespread shortages of basic domestic items.

In the western city of Maracaibo, a 25-year-old was killed when he was crushed by a truck during a protest, the chief prosecutor's office said. Public transportation was shut down Wednesday, many businesses closed and long lines snaked to the few operating ATMs.

(AP Photo/Fernando Llano). Anti-government protesters are met with tear gas fired by security forces as they try to march to the Interior Ministry, in Caracas, Venezuela, Thursday, May 18, 2017. That sparked now-familiar scenes of masked youths brandishing shields and throwing stones at the security line.

Other reports by GizPress

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