The US State Department allows for the possibility of so-called secondary sanctions against foreign individuals, legal entities, and even governments that cooperate with those already on Washington’s black list on Venezuela, US Special Representative for Venezuela Elliott Abrams told journalists on Tuesday, ONA reports quoting TASS.
Abrams was asked whether the United States intends to introduce restrictions against individuals, companies and foreign governments that do business with companies "dependent on the regime of [Venezuelan leader Nicolas] Maduro and his government." "We have not yet introduced them, secondary sanctions. Undoubtedly, this is possible," he replied.
According to him, the appropriate decision "will depend on the behavior of the regime for a certain period of time, depends on the behavior of organizations, many of which have slightly deviated from the Maduro regime." "We have not yet made this decision," said Abrams. "It is always possible, but we have not reached it yet," he concluded.
On March 4, 2019 opposition leader Juan Guaido, claimed that the new sanctions would be imposed against the current government of Venezuela, headed by Maduro. "The number of international sanctions against the regime will only increase," VPI TV channel quoted Guaido as saying. The opposition leader, who just returned from a trip to other countries in the region, did not provide details on when new sanctions will be introduced.
The United States announced a new round of sanctions against Venezuela last week. The US administration put several members of Venezuela's National Guard and police for blocking humanitarian aid delivery to the country on 23 February 2019. At the end of January, the US imposed sanctions on Venezuela's state-run oil company PDVSA.
On January 23, Venezuelan National Assembly Speaker Juan Guaido proclaimed himself as the country's acting president. Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro has described it as a coup attempt and announced severing diplomatic relations with the United States. On January 28, the US imposed sancitons on Venezuela's state-owned PDVSA oil company.
Guaido was recognized as interim president by the Lima Group countries (except for Mexico), as well as by Albania, Georgia, the United States, and the Organization of American States. Several EU countries came forward with support for the Venezuelan parliament and expressed hope for new elections to resolve the crisis. Maduro was supported by Russia, Bolivia, Iran, Cuba, Nicaragua, El Salvador and Turkey. Belarus and China called for resolving all issues by peaceful means and spoke against any interference from the outside. The UN secretary general called for dialogue to resolve the crisis.