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Trump Response to Guaidó Aide Arrest: New Financial Sanctions on Venezuela

March 22, 2019

The Trump administration announced tough new financial sanctions Friday against the Venezuelan regime in retaliation for the detention of Juan Guaidó’s chief of staff.

The new moves targeting the Venezuelan banking sector are the strongest action taken by the administration since the crippling oil sanctions against the state-run oil company, PDVSA...

Eric Farnsworth, vice president of the Council of the Americas, who recently testified before the U.S. Senate on Venezuela, said sanctions that limit the ability for individual Venezuelans to access credit will “complicate the lives of everyday Venezuelans” but also put further pressure on Maduro to dole out benefits that keep him in power.

“It does threaten to complicate the lives of everyday Venezuelans, but I think the answer here is to find a way to get Maduro to be eased out of office,” Farnsworth said. “I’m not being callous here, but their lives are going to get worse under the current regime anyway with no end in sight.”

Farnsworth also said the administration’s response to Guaidó’s chief of staff being detained suggests that the White House is going to consider every sanction possible before seriously considering a military response.

“China is bankrolling Venezuela, and until you can change that relationship, U.S. sanctions are only going to get you part of the way,” Farnsworth said. “At the end of the day, if Maduro can’t get financing from somewhere, his regime goes kaput.”...

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