Maduro Shuffles PDVSA Management, Oil Minister

Ashley Carr
August 26, 2017

The U.S. applied new sanctions on the Venezuelan government on Friday, banning Americans from doing business with the state-owned PDVSA oil and natural gas company, APA reports quoting Anadolu Agency.

Vice President Mike Pence spoke to a crowd in Doral, Florida on Wednesday, saying that the US will bring "the full measure of American economic and diplomatic power to bear" to deal with the Maduro regime in Venezuela. The White House issued a statement targeting Maduro's creation of a "constituent assembly" to replace the National Assembly and rewrite the Venezuelan constitution.

"We have troops all over the world. What do they want - they want to starve the Venezuelan people?"

The new sanctions prohibit banks from fostering new deals, including those involving debt and equity, with the government and the country's state-run oil company, PDVSA.

Trump has even raised the possibility of military action in Venezuela, although the White House seems to have focused more on economic and diplomatic sanctions.

Following Maduro's decision to create an illegal alternate legislature known as the "national constituent assembly" (ANC) designed to consolidate his authority, the Trump administration placed personal sanctions on Maduro and 13 senior Venezuelan officials on grounds of human rights abuses, corruption, and undermining democracy.

North Korea warns of 'merciless strike' ahead of US-South Korea drills
The North Korean government newspaper also promised that the pariah state can at anytime target the US with a "merciless strike". Pyongyang view the joint military drills as a rehearsal for a northern invasion.

According to Pence, Trump's comments about military action were meant to convey "resolve and determination ... to not let this moment slip, to not stand idly by while a neighbor collapses into dictatorship".

Speaking at the U.N. headquarters in New York, Arreaza said "threats" and "supposed sanctions" from the United States are "uncivilized politics". It also prohibited any transactions of existing bonds belonging to the Venezuelan state, with the exception of PDVSA. The White House has declared Maduro's regime a dictatorship. They also exempt transactions with PDVSA's US subsidiary, Citgo.

"No military actions are anticipated in the near future".

"We're seeing the tragedy of tyranny play out before our eyes", Vice President Mike Pence said after touring South America.

Any economic sanctions, however mild, increase the risk Venezuela will default on its ballooning debt.

Maduro also said that a blockade preventing the arrival of food and medicine to the country could be used to exacurbate crises before a potential invasion.

Other reports by My Hot News

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