U.S. Department of State
Office of the Spokesperson
For Immediate Release
Statement by Robert Palladino, Deputy Spokesperson
February 15, 2019
The United States remains steadfast in its support of Venezuelan Interim President Juan Guaido, the transitional government, and the Venezuelan people. We will continue to use the full weight of U.S. economic and diplomatic power to press for the restoration of Venezuelan democracy.
Today, the United States took action to continue to hold corrupt officials of the former illegitimate Maduro regime accountable by imposing sanctions on five current or former officials of the illegitimate Maduro regime. The corrupt officials include individuals of the Cuban-sponsored Venezuelan intelligence forces (SEBIN), the military counter-intelligence (DGCIM) unit, and the brutal special actions force (FAES). Additionally, the United States is taking action against the current President of Petroleos de Venezuela, S.A. (PdVSA).
These actions are in addition to the visa restrictions and revocations announced February 7 on members of the illegitimate Constituent Assembly, which usurped many of the constitutional powers of the legitimate National Assembly, and in addition to the visa restrictions and revocations announced on February 13 on members of the illegitimate Supreme Court, for undermining Venezuela’s democracy.
While the United States is holding certain officials responsible for their actions repressing the Venezuelan people and subverting their democracy, we reiterate our calls for the recognition of Juan Guaido as Interim President and call on all Venezuelan officials, including military and security forces, to help return Venezuela to the democratic country its citizens demand and deserve.
U.S. sanctions need not be permanent; they are intended to change behavior. The United States will continue to take appropriate action to respond to the situation in Venezuela as it develops.
For further information, the Department of Treasury’s press release can be found here.