The United States has put back some punishments on Venezuela. This happened a few days after the top court in the South American country said no to the main person running against the current leader, MarÃa Corina Machado.
She won the primary election by a lot and now she is the main candidate for the opposition to run for president in 2024.
However, on Friday, Venezuela’s highest court agreed to prevent Ms. Machado from running for public office for 15 years.
MsMachado said she will keep running for president even though she was banned.
In October, the US made its sanctions on Venezuela less strict after President NicolÃ¡s Maduro’s government and the opposition agreed to hold fair elections in 2024.
As agreed, the Maduro government, which was re-elected in 2018 in an election that many people didn’t think was fair, said it would let other countries watch the next election.
The “Barbados deal” allows opposition candidates who were not allowed to run for office to now appeal against the bans. This agreement was made in Barbados, where both sides met.
In return, the US, which supported the Barbados agreement, reduced some of its punishments on Venezuela.
However, on Friday, the Supreme Court rejected the appeals filed by Ms Machado and another well-known opposition leader, Henrique Capriles. The court allowed some unknown politicians to participate again.
The US government said they were very worried about the decision to not let MarÃa Corina Machado participate.
It said it went against what Maduro and his representatives agreed to in the Barbados electoral roadmap. They promised to let all parties choose their candidates for the presidential election.
On Monday, the sanctions on Venezuela’s mining sector started again.
The US government said to American companies that they need to stop doing business with a Venezuelan mining company called Minerven by February 13th.
Minerven has been punished by the US before. In 2019, Ofac said Maduro and his government were using a gold mining company called Minerven to make themselves rich and hurt the people of Venezuela.
The US government put sanctions back on the mining industry, but hasn’t put them back on Venezuela’s oil industry yet. This shows that they are taking their time and may put more sanctions on later if they don’t like what’s happening.
John Kirby, a spokesperson for national security at the White House, said on Monday that the Maduro government has until “spring” to keep their promises. “They have to make choices before we decide what choices we will make. ”
Ms Machado promised that she will stay strong and stick to her beliefs. She said she was chosen in the primary election and she will do what she promised. She also said that she is confident they will win and their opponents should be ready to lose. “They can’t have elections unless I’m there. ”
Jorge Rodríguez, a friend of Mr. Maduro who spoke for the government at the talks in Barbados, said that the government did what it promised. He said, “Those who wanted to appeal did, and promised to accept the decision. “