PRESS RELEASE
March 19, 2018

For more information:                                                                                      
Keith Fernandez, 305-668-5994202-225-8200
Keith.Fernandez@mail.house.gov


 Ros-Lehtinen Welcomes Administration’s Ban on Maduro’s Digital Currency Scheme, Additional Sanctions

 “I urge the Administration to continue building on this momentum and use all available tools to increase pressure on Maduro, but we must also find a way to support the people and their humanitarian needs.”

(Washington, DC) – U.S. Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL), Chairman of the Subcommittee on the Middle East and North Africa, issued the following statement regarding the Administration’s actions targeting the Maduro regime in Venezuela. The President issued a new Executive Order prohibiting U.S. transactions with the Venezuelan Petro cryptocurrency. The Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) also issued sanctions on four current or former Venezuelan regime officials, targeting those responsible for the economic crisis and rampant corruption in Venezuela. Statement by Ros-Lehtinen:

“I welcome the administration’s actions today against the Maduro regime. Maduro’s latest attempt to create the Petro cryptocurrency in order to circumvent U.S. sanctions only means that the financial pressure we have been applying recently is working, and the President’s latest Executive Order prohibiting U.S. transactions in support of the Petro ratchets up that pressure. Time and again, Maduro has desperately tried to come up with new schemes to further weaken democratic institutions, assert his power, and avoid all accountability for the economic and humanitarian crises he has created. Any individual or entity helping Maduro achieve those goals and working to enrich supporters of the regime should be penalized to the full extent of our laws.

I’m also pleased that the Administration has named four additional regime officials tied to corruption and economic mismanagement. Maduro and his thugs are the only ones responsible for the dire humanitarian crisis that has killed thousands of Venezuelans, including many innocent young children; and they must be held accountable for their actions. I urge the Administration to continue building on this momentumand use all available tools to increase pressure on Maduro, but we must also find a way to support the people and their humanitarian needs. I look forward to working with the Administration to advance all of our goals and objectives in Venezuela and in support of the Venezuelan people.” 

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