U.S. re-imposes sanctions on Venezuela after confirmation of the disqualification of opposition candidate María Corina Machado

U.S. re-imposes sanctions on Venezuela after confirmation of the disqualification of opposition candidate María Corina Machado

Following the Supreme Court’s confirmation of the disqualification of opposition presidential candidate María Corina Machado, the United States has decided to reimpose economic sanctions against Venezuela.

This action represents a new setback in the relations between both countries and the Venezuelan opposition.

Changes in U.S. policy towards Venezuela

US government has started to apply again economic sanctions against Caracas, specifically in the mining sector. According to a statement issued by the US Office of Foreign Assets Control, all US companies that carry out transactions with the state-owned company Minerven have until February 13 to close such transactions.

These sanctions follow several warnings by Washington to Caracas to reverse the relaxation of sanctions that had begun last year, after the Barbados Agreements between the government and the Venezuelan opposition.

Disqualification of María Corina Machado and Henrique Capriles

María Corina Machado, elected as the opposition’s unity candidate in October, had been disqualified in June by the Venezuelan Comptroller General’s Office from running for elected office for a period of 15 years.

This measure was confirmed by the Supreme Court, together with the disqualification of Henrique Capriles, Machado’s possible replacement in the opposition and two-time presidential candidate.

These decisions represent a setback for a possible normalization of relations between the United States, Venezuela and the opposition. The White House had demanded that Caracas lift disqualifications of opposition members, relax bans and release political prisoners and “unjustly detained” U.S. citizens.

In exchange, some of the economic sanctions affecting the Venezuelan economy, such as limits on the sale of oil and gas abroad, had been relaxed.

Repercussions of the deteriorating political climate

Political climate in Venezuela has deteriorated rapidly in recent weeks. The government has denounced an alleged plot to assassinate President Maduro, and has accused journalists and activists of being part of this conspiracy. In addition, there have been arrests of regional leaders of the Machado campaign, accused of conspiring against the government.

These developments have led to increasing tension between the United States and Venezuela. The head of the Venezuelan government delegation in negotiations with the opposition, Jorge Rodriguez, has warned that his country will respond severely if the U.S. resumes or applies new sanctions.

For her part, Machado has reiterated her intention to compete in the next presidential elections and has affirmed that she will defeat Maduro.

Conclusions

Renewed U.S. economic sanctions against Venezuela following the confirmation of the disqualification of María Corina Machado represent a new obstacle in the relations between the two countries and the Venezuelan opposition.

These measures reflect the deteriorating political climate in Venezuela and the growing tension between the parties involved.

It is important to closely follow the development of these events and the possible reactions that may arise. The situation in Venezuela continues to be complex and volatile, with repercussions both domestically and internationally.