US Threatens Sanctions on Venezuelan Oil Sector

Aerial view petroleum field with oil drilling

( – The United States has just recently said that they would reinstate oil sanctions on Venezuela’s oil sector after the courts kept a ban on candidate Maria Corina Machado.

Maria Machado won a primary to become an opposing unit for the 2024 presidential election. However, on Friday the Venezuelan Supreme Court banned Machado from running for office.

The United States claims that President Nicolas Maduro was sworn in for a second term, but they claimed that it was not a fair election at all. In turn, the United States threatened to impose sanctions on Venezuela’s oil sector, which is a highly important part of the Venezuelan economy.

Venezuela responded by saying that the United States’ threats were “rude and improper blackmail.”

With this said, the United States did lift or loosen those sanctions in October when the Maduro government came to an agreement that would help to establish a free and fair presidential election which would be held in the second half of 2024.

The US Treasury also issued a temporary rule that would allow transactions from Venezuela’s oil sector to be completed. This oil exemption is expected to expire on April 18, but the United States has made it very clear that nothing will change if Venezuela does not meet “its commitments under the electoral roadmap.” Essentially, they said that if they don’t lift the ban on Maria Corina Machado and other candidates, then this will not renew.

Venezuela’s Vice President, Delcy Rodrigues, rejected the ultimatum and said that the US government was blackmailing them. She also threatened to halt the deportation flights for Venezuelan migrants who are in the United States illegally.

Ms. Machado is expected to win the election if she can run. “We are going to win and they must prepare to lose… They cannot hold elections without me,” Ms Machado said.

A close ally of Mr. Maduro said that the government did uphold their end of the bargain. They said, “Those who wanted to appeal appealed and also pledged to respect the outcome.”

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