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US urges OAS to suspend Venezuela, impose new sanctions

US urges OAS to suspend Venezuela, impose new sanctions

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US urges OAS to suspend Venezuela, impose new sanctions
Washington, May 8 (IANS) The US has urged the Organisation of American States (OAS) to suspend Venezuela from its ranks and impose new sanctions on alleged drug traffickers linked with the Nicolas Maduro government in Caracas.
"We call on the members of this institution to uphold our long-standing commitment to democracy and freedom ... (and) to suspend Venezuela from the Organization of American States," Vice President Mike Pence said on Monday in an address before the international body's Permanent Council.
The Venezuelan government on April 28 requested to leave the OAS amid complaints within the international body over its ongoing political and social crisis, but its departure will not become effective for two years, reports Efe news.
Despite the political weight carried by the US call to suspend Venezuela, for the moment there is not enough support within the organization to take that step.
Doing so requires the support of two-thirds of the 35 OAS members or 24 states.
On Monday, the Venezuelan delegation walked out of the session held to welcome Pence to the OAS.
Venezuelan Deputy Foreign Minister for North America Samuel Moncada said that his delegation was not present because they consider the gathering to be "farce" and a "monstrosity" and complained that there was no opportunity afforded to reply to Pence's comments.
"The coercive measures of the US are an international crime that we will denounce," Moncada told reporters.
Pence also echoed the announcement of new measures against former Venezuelan officials made on Monday by the US Treasury Department, which included on its "black list" of drug traffickers Pedro luis Martin Olivares, a former top official with Venezuela's Sebin intelligence service, and Hugo Carvajal, a close confidant of the late President Hugo Chavez, and announced sanctions against Walter Alexander Del Nogal Marquez and Mario Antonio Rodriguez Espinoza for providing financial and technological help to Martin Olivares in his alleged drug trafficking activities.
Pence is the first US Vice President to address the OAS since Democrat Al Gore in 1994.
--IANS
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(This story was auto-published from a syndicated feed. No part of the story has been edited by The Quint.)

(This story was auto-published from a syndicated feed. No part of the story has been edited by The Quint.)

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