Vice President Mike Pence announced Monday that three low-level Maduro-regime members from Venezuela are being sanctioned by the United States.
While giving a speech this morning to the Organization of American States, Pence also announced that 20 companies with ties to Maduro will be sanctioned as well for narcotics trafficking. Of the 20 companies, “16 are based in Venezuela and four in Panama,” according to Reuters.
The sanctions include freezing monetary assets and preventing international travel.
These latest sanctions are part of President Trump’s plan to increase the pressure on the country’s socialist president Nicolas Maduro. The South American country is now prone to food-shortages and has seen thousands of its citizens find refuge in neighboring countries.
Pence also called on the members of the 35-state Organization of American States, to further isolate Venezuela.
“We believe it is time to do more, much more,” Pence said during his address. “Every free nation gathered here must take stronger action to stand with the Venezuelan people and stand up to their oppressors.”
While the recent sanctions indicate the White House is taking a tougher line with Caracas, President Trump has yet to impose “new oil-related sanctions that it has considered for a Venezuelan oil services company and on insurance coverage for tankers carrying Venezuelan oil.” An anonymous White House source did indicate to Reuters that the oil-related sanctions were still being considered.
For his part, Maduro has largely laughed off the U.S. sanctions and continues to blame the United States for his country’s hardships.