Monday 14 June 2021

U.S. to Boost Pressure on Venezuela, Cuba to Curb Russia, China in Region

The United States has unleashed a full-blown campaign to force out Nicolas Maduro, having reaffirmed its commitment to continue supporting Juan Guaido, the self-proclaimed interim president.

The US attempts to oust Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro mark a new step in implementing the current administration’s plan to reinforce control over the region and curb Russia’s and China’s influence there, The Wall Street Journal reported.

According to the WSJ’s source, the Trump administration has adopted a new strategy towards Latin America, and it’s not just about Venezuela.

- Advertisement -

The insider claims that Cuba will likely return to the spotlight since it’s “an antagonist that has dominated American attention in the region for more than 50 years, as well as recent inroads made by Russia, China and Iran”.

The WSJ writes that even though Washington has long criticized Maduro and his predecessor, Hugo Chavez, there’s a number of administration officials who believe that Cuba presents a greater threat from the national security perspective.

Those officials have reportedly cited Cuba’s intelligence operations in the US and its attempts to push the anti-American agenda forward in neighboring Latin American countries.

The publication further elaborates that the Trump administration is seeking to sow discord between Venezuela and Cuba and to cause the “collapse of the regimes” in both countries.

- Advertisement -

In light of US attempts to isolate Havana and Caracas, the two countries are intensifying their contacts with Russia, China and Iran, which spurs Washington’s indignation, the WSJ notes.

A potential ouster of Venezuela’s Maduro is likely to have an immense impact on the region as a whole, and Cuba in particular.

The Trump administration has reversed the Obama-era policy toward the island, having imposed a de facto economic blockade on Havana, which depends heavily on Venezuelan oil.

Big Risks

According to the newspaper, the new strategy was developed by Mauricio Claver-Carone, Senior Director of the US National Security Council’s Western Hemisphere Affairs division, while Senator Marco Rubio and Congressman Mario Diaz-Balart significantly influenced the plan.

The WSJ then alleged that after Venezuela and Cuba, the US will focus on Nicaragua.

- Advertisement -

But the strategy bears serious risks: if Washington’s support for Venezuelan opposition figure Juan Guaido fails to force Maduro out of office, or break ties between Caracas and Havana, the situation in Venezuela may further deteriorate, while the US will be mired in the crisis.

Such a setback may strengthen the positions of Beijing, Moscow, and Tehran in the region, the paper alleged.

At the same time, the WSJ suggests that the US is unlikely to involve other nations in its activities against Cuba: Venezuela has long been considered an outcast by many US allies; however some nations, including Canada and France, are interested in Cuba’s business community.

Escalating Political Crisis in Venezuela

Over the past several days, Venezuela has been living through a presidential crisis: on 23 January, the head of the opposition-led National Assembly, Juan Guaido, challenged the legitimately elected Maduro and proclaimed himself the country’s interim president.

The move was instantly recognized by the United States and a handful of South American countries, with the Trump administration urging Maduro to step down and accept Guaido’s presidency as a fait accompli.

While Maduro has accused Washington of orchestrating a coup in the country, the US has decided to step up the pressure on him and announced that it was slapping sanctions on Venezuela’s state-owned oil and gas giant PDVSA.

Washington blocked all of PDVSA’s assets under its jurisdiction and froze $7 billion worth of the company’s assets, which was blasted by the Venezuelan authorities as a “robbery” that is being accomplished with the help of the “treacherous action of the Venezuelan opposition”.

Shortly after that, the US certified the authority of Guaido to control some assets held by US-insured banks, while the Venezuelan Supreme Court blocked the opposition leader’s bank accounts and financial transactions within the country’s jurisdiction.

It also banned Guaido from leaving the country until an investigation into his activities is completed.

US National Security Adviser John Bolton, for his part, has warned Caracas of “serious consequences for those who attempt to subvert democracy and harm Guaido”.

Guaido has been recognized by US key allies, including Canada and Israel, and over a dozen Latin American nations. The EU Parliament is also considering following suit.

Russia, Iran, Turkey, China, Nicaragua, El Salvador and others have, in turn, reaffirmed their support for Maduro as the only legitimate president of Venezuela.

Article originally appeared on Today Venezuela and is republished here with permission.

- Advertisement -

FACT CHECK:
We strive for accuracy in its reports. But if you see something that doesn’t look right, send us an email. The Q reviews and updates its content regularly to ensure it’s accuracy.

Q24N
Q24N is an aggregator of news for Latin America. Reports from Mexico to the tip of Chile and Caribbean are sourced for our readers to find all their Latin America news in one place.

Related Articles

Which countries could follow El Salvador by making it legal tender?

Q24N - El Salvador may be the first country to adopt...

Peru revises pandemic death toll, now worst in the world per capita

Q24N (Reuters) Peru on Monday almost tripled its official COVID-19 death...

MOST READ

Today’s Vehicle Restriction: June 11, “EVENS”

Today, Friday, June 11, only EVENS can circulate. The measure is countrywide and applied between 5:00 am and 9:00 pm, save for those under the...

Today’s Covid News: Contagion rate in Costa Rica remains unchanged in the last week

QCOSTARICA - The contagion rate of covid-19 in Costa Rica in the last week did not change, a fact that is seen for the...

Estadio Nacional

QCOSTARICA - The multipurpose national stadium, the first modern sport and event arena to be built in Central America, located La Sabana. The stadium was...

Southwest adds yet another route to Liberia, now from Denver

QCOSTARICA - Southwest airlines will add a new route to the Daniel Oduber International Airport, in Liberia, this time connecting with the city of...

eHow to Become Successful in Online Casino Betting 

To become a successful gambler in the online industry, there is a lot to cover. It can be known to be a vastly different...

Which countries could follow El Salvador by making it legal tender?

Q24N - El Salvador may be the first country to adopt bitcoin as legal tender, but recent developments suggest that it might not be...

The U.S. and Democracy in Nicaragua

Q REPORTS (Council on Foreign Affairs) Democracy is being destroyed in Nicaragua. This has been the long-term project of Daniel Ortega, the country’s dictator,...

Diseases, weather and low prices hit the orange sector in Costa Rica

HQ - The appearance of pests and diseases, in particular the 'dragón amarillo' (yellow dragon), the impact of the weather and a sharp drop...

Costa Rica passes law to attract foreign pensioners and rentiers with $150K capital

QCOSTARICA - Costa Rica's legislature approved, in the first debate, a bill that reduces the minimum amount that a foreign pensioner or rentier must...

WANT TO STAY UP TO DATE WITH THE LATEST!

Get our daily newsletter with the latest posts directly in your mailbox. Click on the subscribe and fill out the form. It's that simple!

Article originally appeared on Today Venezuela and is republished here with permission.

Log In

Forgot password?

Forgot password?

Enter your account data and we will send you a link to reset your password.

Your password reset link appears to be invalid or expired.

Log in

Privacy Policy

Add to Collection

No Collections

Here you'll find all collections you've created before.