"We have said that sanctions will continue, we announced sanctions yesterday," Abrams said. "There will be more, there will be more this week, there will be more next week. We'll continue to impose sanctions on high-ranking members of the regime and people who handle their financial affairs".
He added that the United States would reintroduce a UN resolution this week calling for humanitarian aid delivery to Venezuela. He also said he hopes the resolution will call for free elections in Venezuela. The US special envoy also noted that he would not be meeting with any representatives of Maduro's government.
On 28 January, the United States, which is supporting self-proclaimed Venezuelan president Juan Guaido, introduced sanctions against the Venezuelan state oil company PDVSA, having blocked its assets and interests, worth of $7 billion, amid the crisis in Venezuela. Washington also prohibited any deal with the Venezuelan oil giant.
On 22 February, Guaido arrived in the Colombian border city of Cucuta, where so-called humanitarian aid from the United States and a number of other countries was being collected, in order to help deliver the supplies to Venezuela despite the fact that the government refused to accept the aid. While the attempt to forcefully bring the aid into Venezuela failed, Guaido stayed in Colombia to take part in Monday's meeting of the Lima Group in Bogota. Guaido announced on Monday that he intends to return to Venezuela this week.
Maduro said Tuesday that Guaido must face trial after his return to Venezuela from Colombia, where he traveled in defiance of the travel ban imposed by the Venezuelan Supreme Court.