US President Donald Trump has imposed an economic embargo against Venezuela in a move that seeks to frustrate Venezuelan president Nicolas Maduro’s claim to power.
Trump who did this in an executive order Monday evening said the order freezes all Venezuelan government owned assets in the United States and also barred transactions with its government.
“These assets are blocked and may not be transferred, paid, exported, withdrawn, or otherwise dealt in,” the order said.
The order affects the assets owned by Venezuela government in the US.
The order bars “the making of any contribution or provision of funds, goods, or services by, to, or for the benefit of any person whose property and interests in property are blocked pursuant to this order,” as well as “the receipt of any contribution or provision of funds, goods, or services from any such person.”
But the order also allowed for humanitarian goods such as medicine, food and clothing.
Trump cited “the continued usurpation of power, human rights abuses including arbitrary or unlawful arrest and detention of Venezuelan citizens, interference with freedom of expression and the ongoing attempts to frustrate the Interim president Juan Guaido,” as the basis of his decision.
The US has openly declared support for Guaido who declared himself interim president, against the incumbent Maduro who enjoys the support of the military and who claims Trump is out to exercise imperial influence.
This is so far the harshest decision meted out against Maduro as there have been other economic sanctions since the struggle for power began. This came about after Guaido claimed that Maduro had rigged him out of a possible election win, a state that has led to the lengthy post-election impasse that the country is now facing.
The Wall Street Journal for instance said this the first time the US is imposing such embargoes on a western hemisphere government. In the past, such sanctions have been levied on countries such as North Korea, Iran, Syria and Cuba.
As it stands currently, 3.3 million people have left Venezuela since the start of 2016 and approximately a quarter of the population requires relief aid.