Published: Fri, May 19, 2017
Medicine | By Earnest Bishop

US slaps sanctions on Venezuela Supreme Court judges

US slaps sanctions on Venezuela Supreme Court judges

The Trump administration plans to impose new sanctions soon on at least half a dozen Venezuelan officials for alleged human rights violations amid US concern over the Venezuelan government's crackdown on unrest, congressional aides said on Thursday. But near-daily anti-government protests were triggered by the ruling and have continued across the country, with more than 40 people killed.

The move provoked condemnation from Venezuela n Foreign Minister Delcy Rodriguez. Venezuelan opposition leader Henrique Capriles said Thursday authorities confiscated his passport and prevented him from travelling to NY to discuss his country's deadly political crisis with United Nations officials.

Among those targeted is Maikel Moreno, the president of the pro-government Supreme Court, which issued a ruling in late March.

The de facto annulment of the congress drew widespread worldwide condemnation, and the decision was later partially reversed. The decision was later partially reversed, though it did not stop the unrest.

The members of Venezuela's Supreme Court of Justice allowed the country's executive branch to rule through emergency decrees, thereby restricting the rights of the people, the U.S. Treasury Department said in a statement.

The 32-judge Supreme Court has helped President Nicolás Maduro consolidate his powers in a country mired in economic crisis and violent protests.

The sanctions freeze any assets the country's most powerful judicial figures may have in United States jurisdictions and lock them out of much of global banking.

Earlier this year, the U.S. Treasury also imposed new sanctions against Venezuelan Vice President Tareck El Aissami, after accusing him of being involved in drug trafficking.

The executive order issued Thursday marked the second time the US has sanctioned leaders of Venezuela's socialist government since Donald Trump became president this year.

Todd Pletcher takes sure and steady approach to Preakness
With a victory, Always Dreaming would head to the Belmont Stakes in NY three weeks later with a shot at winning the Triple Crown. When nobody's kicking mud in your face, you tend to run a bit better than when 19 other animals are throwing muck back at you.

A senior USA official warned of further action against "bad actors" if there are no changes in the country. But sanctions so far have stopped short of hitting the oil sector in Venezuela, which is a major USA oil supplier.

"We've made it clear to Maduro and his thugs that their actions are not going to go unpunished", Republican Sen.

Hundreds of tho us ands of people have taken to the streets across Venezuela in protest against the Maduro's government, demanding elections, freedom for jailed activists, foreign aid and autonomy for the opposition-led legislature. But protesters say government security forces are violently suppressing peaceful marches and are killing citizens. Trump said they discussed Venezuela.

In February, the United States designated Maduro's vice president and presumed heir Tareck El Aissami a major global drug trafficker.

The officials have denied the charges and called them a pretext to try to topple Maduro's government, something Washington has denied.

In March, the court explicitly stated it was assuming the congress' role in a ruling authorizing Maduro to create oil joint ventures without the previously mandated congressional approval.

The announcement followed a series of rulings since mid-2016 in which the court usurped the National Assembly's powers in support of Maduro. Even though they no longer sit in Congress, the court said opposition leaders had not handled their case legally. Maduro's opposition was planning a larger Saturday protest nationwide to demand elections.

President Nicolas Maduro in turn blames sabotage by the "bourgeois" opposition, which he says is backed by Washington.

Like this: