The United States imposes sanctions on Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro. The Ministry of Finance reported Monday that all assets of the socialist leader falling under US jurisdiction are frozen. American citizens can not do business with him anymore. The White House calls Maduro ‘not just a bad leader, but now a dictator’ too.
Maduro is not impressed by the sanctions. In a fierce response, he calls US President Donald Trump an emperor and says he is not afraid of financial constraints. Maduro says he is punished because of his criticism of the US. “If even the Emperor’s threats and sanctions do not intimidate me, nothing scares me. Put all the sanctions you want, but the Venezuelan people have chosen freedom and I’m the president of a free people, “said the president of Venezuela in a response.
US measures are a response to the controversial Venezuelan election of Sunday. That ‘illegal election shows that Maduro is a dictator who adds to the will of the Venezuelan people,’ said Minister Steven Mnuchin (Finance) in a statement. The US had already warned Maduro for sanctions if he would not cancel the election for the controversial constitutional assembly. The Venezuelan President ignored that warning.
In a televised speech, he said that US sanctions only show how much despair and hate Trump Venezuela’s socialist government is taking. He also referred to President Trump’s presidential election, even though he got fewer votes than Hillary Clinton. “In the United States, you can become president with three million votes less than your opponent. What a great democracy! ” said Maduro. The Venezuelan government leader is now in the mood of Syrian President Assad, Zimbabwean government leader Mugabe and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, who had previously imposed sanctions from the US.
— VIVOplay (@vivoplaynet) August 1, 2017
Internationally, there is much criticism of the elections. In addition to the United States, the European Union and Canada, Colombia, Mexico, and Britain, among other things, expressed their dissatisfaction with the elections.
Maduro still has some allies, including Bolivian President Evo Morales. He congratulated him on Twitter for his election success. “We congratulate the Venezuelan people on his democratic participation in the election,” he tweeted to Morales. ‘That guarantees the unity and sovereignty of the country. It shows that the ballot box is stronger than bullets. ‘ In addition, to support from Bolivia, Maduro also received congratulations from his socialist colleagues in Nicaragua and Cuba.
— Once Noticias (@OnceNoticiasTV) August 1, 2017
Opposition leaders removed
Two opposition leaders in Venezuela were taken away from their homes where they were arrested. According to a declaration of their families on Twitter. The two opposition leaders are Leopoldo Lopez and Antonio Ledezma. The opposition boycotted the controversial election for the constitution of a constitutional assembly, giving him much more power.
The two opposition leaders have called on the Venezuelan people to face the streets in protest against Maduro and his power expansion. According to official figures, the protests have killed ten but, according to the opposition, there were many more.
Lopez was arrested in July after he had been in prison for three years for his role in anti-government protests in 2014. Ledezma was arrested in 2015 after being arrested for taking part in a coup against Maduro.
Picture credit: Marcos Salgado / Shutterstock.com