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IADB cancels China meeting after Beijing bars Venezuela representative
24 March 2019, 12:30 | Tara Lloyd
Juan Guaidó The Venezuelan opposition leader has US backing
Guaido said his team has also been in touch with companies whose Venezuelan assets were expropriated by the late former President Hugo Chavez, Maduro's mentor and predecessor, about returning to the country should Maduro leave power.
The treasury said regime insiders have transformed those institutions into vehicles to move funds overseas in an effort to prop up Maduro.
Maduro says his government is the victim of an "economic war" led by his political adversaries, and blames USA financial and oil sector sanctions for the country's situation.
The U.S. on Friday sanctioned a major Venezuelan bank in retaliation for the arrest of a senior aide to opposition leader Juan Guaido whom Washington recognizes as the leader of the crises-wracked country.
Venezuela plunged into a deep political crisis in January, when Guaido invoked the constitution to assume an interim presidency, arguing Maduro's May 2018 re-election was illegitimate.
Maduro, who has overseen a dramatic collapse of the OPEC nation's economy, has called Guaido a puppet of the United States and said he should "face justice", but has not explicitly ordered his arrest.
The meeting was reportedly organised by the U.S. president to show his support for Caribbean countries that back democratic transition in Venezuela - the five countries having either denounced Nicolas Maduro or joined more than 50 countries in recognising Juan Guaido as the rightful interim leader of the nation.
The United States is concerned about reports of prison officials preventing attorneys and families of detained US citizens from delivering food and denying communication, the statement said. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and other Trump administration officials have told countries that they should beware of Chinese investment opportunities.
Food and medicine are scarce, and more than 3 million Venezuelans have fled the country.
Opposition leader Juan Guaido says the Venezuelan government is weak and doesn't "dare" to detain him.
In just over a month, on April 28, increasingly harsh U.S. sanctions on Venezuela will intensify to a critical level with a ban on all oil sales to the United States, Venezuela's main crude buyer. Guaido's chief of staff, Roberto Marrero, was kidnapped. Venezuela owes more than $20 billion.
For years, Venezuela has provided then with a reliable supply of oil on low-credit terms, leaving them indebted to Caracas.
Pence called Maduro a "corrupt dictator" and said those nations are holding Venezuela back in its "steady march towards freedom".
Under President Trump, the United States will continue to stand with the people of Venezuela as they reclaim their birthright of libertad.
"The Chengdu meeting would have been a great opportunity for China to readjust the trilateral relationship with the USA and Latin America", Zhang said.
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The step is expected to worsen already dire economic conditions ravaging Venezuela, a once-wealthy South American nation that has become impoverished under Maduro.
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