House Democrats urge Biden to lift Venezuela sanctions

AP Photos | Left: Bonnie Cash | Right: Pablo Martinez Monsivais

A group of 18 progressive House Democrats sent a letter to President Biden, urging him to lift all sanctions against Venezuela that “exacerbate the humanitarian situation” in the country.

In a letter dated May 10, led by Reps. Raúl Grijalva (D-Ariz.) and Jesús García (D-Ill.), the group wrote, “It is clear that broad sanctions have failed to achieve their aims.”

“In light of this, and the dire human costs incurred, we urge you to lift all U.S. financial and sectoral sanctions that exacerbate the humanitarian situation, though without hindering or delaying the urgent action needed to transition the U.S. economy off of fossil fuels,” the letter reads.

The U.S. has placed multiple sanctions against Venezuela, many of them having to do with President Nicolás Maduro’s alleged human rights violations.

The letter follows another request for sanctions relief sent to Biden, Secretary of State Antony Blinken and U.S. Ambassador to Venezuela James Story last month by Venezuelan civil society leaders and economists, according to Bloomberg.

“The suffering of the Venezuelan people is a tragedy. Though this tragedy is the result of various factors, numerous studies have shown that U.S. sanctions have been one of the leading causes,” the letter from the U.S. lawmakers reads.

In March, senior U.S. officials visited Venezuela to meet with Maduro’s government shortly before the U.S. banned Russian energy imports. Lawmakers on both sides of the aisle criticized the administration for its willingness to engage with Venezuela, as well as Saudi Arabia and Iran, over potential oil deals amid the ban.

Tags Antony Blinken Jesús García Joe Biden Nicolas Maduro oil Raúl Grijalva sanctions Venezuela Venezuela

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