Venezuelan authorities have introduced an entry ban list which includes several top US officials whom the Venezuelan government accuses of human rights abuses. The list includes former US President George W. Bush and former Vice President Dick Cheney.
“I have decided on a prohibition list for individuals who will not be permitted visas and who can never enter Venezuela, [including] top US politicians who have committed human rights violations. They have bombed the people of Iraq, the people of Syria, the people of Vietnam,” Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro stated in a fiery speech on Saturday, according to Venezuelan news portal Venezuelanalysis.com. “They cannot come to Venezuela because they are terrorists,” the president added.
Other individuals making the list include former CIA head George Tenet, as well as legislators accused of anti-government legislation including Senator Marco Rubio, Senator Bob Menendez, Representative Mario Diaz Balart and Representative Ileana Ros-Lehtinen.
When explaining his decision, Maduro made it clear that the sanctions would not affect ordinary Americans: “You can count on the fact that the people of Bolivar respect the people of the United States, and recognize in you a brother people; these decisions are against the imperialist elite,” the Venezuelan president of the ruling United Socialist Party stated.
On Tuesday, the US State Department announced additional visa restrictions against several Venezuelan officials and their families, accusing them of human rights violations and corruption.
Last week Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro said that Washington has orchestrated several plots against Venezuela, adding that the opposition is currently plotting a coup with US backing. On Monday, Venezuelan Foreign Minister Delcy Rodriguez stated that the US would have two weeks to pare down its 100-strong Caracas Embassy presence to 17 persons.
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