"Update: VERDAD Act passes out of committee", Menendez said via Twitter. "This is the most comprehensive effort to confront the crisis in Venezuela. We've set up the structure for the Trump [administration] to boost [Venezuela's] democracy movement — doubling humanitarian aid [and] expanding sanctions against [President Nicolas] Maduro's officials".
Menendez explained that the measure would also reaffirm US support for Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido and the opposition-led National Assembly, and establish US policy to pursue "a peaceful, diplomatic solution to the Venezuelan crisis".
Guaido's envoy to the United States, Carlos Vecchio, said the legislation will help advance the objective to achieve the transition of government in Venezuela.
In addition, the measure requires the Trump administration to cooperate with Latin American and European governments to enforce their own sanctions.
The act also appeals to the US government to "repurpose the corrupt financial holdings" of Venezuelan authorities and pursues to engage in the reconstruction of Venezuela’s economy in cooperation with international financial institutions. The bill is now headed to the full Senate for a vote.
Maduro, in turn, has accused the United States of trying to orchestrate a coup in order to install Guaido as its puppet and take over Venezuela’s natural resources. Russia, China, Cuba, Bolivia, Turkey and a number of other countries have voiced their support for constitutionally-elected Maduro as the only legitimate president of Venezuela.