US Imposes Sanctions on Venezuela Central Bank

The United States government announced on Wednesday the imposition of new sanctions against what it calls the “troika of tyranny,” composed of Cuba, Venezuela and Nicaragua. The National Security Advisor, John Bolton, was chosen by President Donald Trump to make the announcement, with which they seek to “reverse the consequences of the disastrous policies of the era (of former President Barack) Obama.

In his speech during a luncheon with the Cuban exile community in Miami, Bolton announced sanctions against the Central Bank of Venezuela, the main economic authority and issuer of that country. Washington indicated that it will prohibit US transactions with this financial institution, as well as those of its director, Iliana Ruzza Terán.

“The Treasury is designating the Central Bank of Venezuela to prevent it from being used as a tool by the illegitimate regime of (Nicolás) Maduro, which continues to burden Venezuela’s assets and exploit government institutions to enrich its corrupt people,” detailed the Treasury of the United States in a statement that accompanied Bolton’s speech.

The Treasury Department specified that it took measures to ensure that ordinary Venezuelans can use debit and credit cards, even though the bank is on the blacklist.

During the same event, Bolton announced sanctions against the governments of Cuba and Nicaragua, which he accuses of “glorifying socialism and communism.” In his speech he indicated that there will be restrictions on travel and remittances to Cuba, as well as sanctions against the son of Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega.

In front of Cuba, the US security adviser indicated that “unfamiliar” trips to the island will be restricted, which were allowed after Barack Obama defrosted relations with Havana in December 2014. The sending of remittances from the United States to Cuba, the second source of income for the island, will also be affected by the new sanctions.

“These new measures will help to take away the American dollars from the Cuban regime,” Bolton said. According to the Havana Consulting Group, 70% of Cubans receive remittances.

A few hours before, the Donald Trump administration announced in Washington that it will activate a rule in May that allows US courts to sue foreign companies present in Cuba that manage assets confiscated from Cubans by the revolution.

Bolton also announced actions against Laureano Ortega Murillo, son of President Ortega and his wife Rosario Murillo, who is vice president and first lady. The Treasury accused the young man of doing “corrupt business” with foreign investors.

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