Trump puts the squeeze on Maduro with new sanctions

Jan 29, 2019, 5:16 AM EST
U.S. National Security Adviser John Bolton said that the sanctions would prevent Maduro and his allies from “looting Venezuela’s assets.”
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Venezuelan leader Nicolás Maduro’s desperate bid to cling on to power suffered another blow on Monday as the U.S. sanctioned the country’s state-owned oil firm PDVSA, a move that comes as a shot in the arm for opposition leader Juan Guaidó.

U.S. National Security Adviser John Bolton said that the sanctions would prevent Maduro and his allies from “looting Venezuela’s assets,” adding that the company could escape the restrictions by recognizing Guaidó as the president, writes the BBC.

The sanctions could further stifle Maduro on the economic front, blocking $7bn of PDVSA assets immediately in addition to stripping the company $11bn in export proceeds in the coming years, notes The Guardian. Bolton admitted that the sanctions would also help Washington counter strategic threats from Cuba and Iran, the adversaries of America with deep penetration in Venezuela.