Wednesday, 18 October, 2017

US Slaps Sanctions on Venezuelan President Maduro

People wait to cast their vote at a polling station during the Constituent Assembly election in Caracas Venezuela Venezuela Election Two People Killed Near Polling Station REUTERS Marco Bello
Lamar Ellis | 02 August, 2017, 01:36

President Nicolas Maduro claimed a popular mandate Monday to dramatically recast Venezuela's political system, dismissing USA sanctions imposed on him and condemnations by his domestic opponents and governments around the world. "Sanction me as you wish, but the Venezuelan people have chose to be free and I am the independent president of a free nation".

The Trump administration backed away from earlier threats to sanction Venezuela's oil industry - a move that could undermine Maduro's government but raise USA gas prices and deepen Venezuela's humanitarian crisis.

U.S. oil markets had a muted reaction yesterday after Washington slapped sanctions on Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro but experts say broader oil-sector and financial sanctions may be the only way to make the Venezuelan government feel economic pain.

"The threats and sanctions.do not intimidate me". I don't deserve imperialist orders. "Here are your sanctions at himself, Donald trump!"

Venezuela's attorney general, Luisa Ortega, a vocal critic of the Maduro government, called the vote an expression of "dictatorial ambition". The result would mean the ruling party won more support than it had in any national election since 2013, despite a cratering economy, spiraling inflation, shortages of medicine and malnutrition.

"Reporting shows that the majority of Venezuelans steered clear of polling stations and chose not to participate in this effort to distract from the country's real problem: the shriveling of democracy and a humanitarian crisis created by President Maduro and his predecessor in what could be the wealthiest country in South America", he said.

The Venezuelan leader also lashed out at Mexico, Peru, Colombia and other Latin American nations who have expressed criticism of the National Assembly vote. In the United States it was officially announced that the elections of 8 November 2016 democratic candidate Hillary Clinton received almost 2.9 million votes more than the trump, however, after the vote, the electoral College was won by her rival. Maduro's Socialist Party would have a stranglehold on power and create a Castro-like communist rule in Venezuela. "The election of the Constituent Assembly was carried out by massacring the basic principles of transparency, neutrality and universality that should characterize free and fair elections", Almagro said in a statement on Monday.

"President Trump congratulated President Erdogan on that and he even later came to the U.S. and his people beat protesters in front of his embassy", the journalist said, referring to a brutal crackdown of anti-Erdogan protesters by the Turkish president's bodyguards in Washington, DC, on May 17.

Governments from Spain to Canada to Argentina and Peru joined Washington in denouncing the vote, which was boycotted by the opposition and widely seen as an affront to democracy.

"Nicolas Maduro's government must stop before it is too late", he said.

Maduro is the fourth head of state sanctioned by the U.S.

The constituent assembly will have the task of rewriting the country's constitution and will have powers above and beyond other state institutions, including the opposition-controlled congress.

Their close personal and political relationship resulted in extensive Venezuelan aid to the Caribbean island and a shared strategy for promoting Latin American unity against US influence in the region.

Two of Venezuela's leading opposition figures were taken from their homes in the middle of the night by state security agents on Tuesday, in President Nicolas Maduro's first moves against his enemies since a widely denounced vote giving his government almost unlimited powers.

Colombia, Mexico, Peru and other nations joined the USA in saying they did not recognize the results of Sunday's election, which appointed a new "Constituent Assembly" superseding Venezuela's legislative body, the opposition-controlled National Assembly.

He said Sunday's vote gave Maduro "less legitimacy, less credibility, less popular support and less ability to govern".

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