EU weighs sanctions over Venezuela vote ‘irregularities’

EU foreign affairs chief Federica Mogherini (L) and Calixto Ortega, Venezuelan Deputy Minister for Foreign Affairs in charge of Europe, attend the 2nd EU/Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) Summit, in Brussels, 9 June 2015. [© European Union, 2015 / Source: EC - Audiovisual Service]

The EU said Tuesday (22 May) it will consider imposing new sanctions on Venezuela after Nicolas Maduro’s re-election was marred by “irregularities” and failed to meet international standards.

European Union foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini said in a statement that “the EU and its member states will consider the adoption of adequate measures” as a result of the vote.

The elections took place “without complying with the minimum international standards for a credible process, not respecting political pluralism, democracy, transparency and rule of law,” the statement said.

It also cited “major obstacles” to the Venezuelan opposition taking part, adding that “numerous reported irregularities during the election day, including vote buying, stood in the way of fair and equitable elections”.

EU says it may impose more sanctions on Venezuela if democracy undermined

The European Union said on Thursday it could impose further sanctions on Venezuela if it believes democracy is being undermined there, after the South American country’s president called for elections next month that the main opposition has said it will boycott.

The reaction from Brussels came after President Donald Trump ratcheted up the pressure on Maduro following what the United States called a “sham” election by tightening American sanctions on Caracas.

The EU had warned in April that it would consider further sanctions against Venezuela of its own if the elections were not fair.

In January Europe added seven senior Venezuelan officials including the interior minister to its sanctions blacklist, after hitting Caracas in November with an embargo on weapons and equipment that could be used for political repression.

France says Venezuela talks to take place, warns of sanctions

Venezuela’s government and opposition will hold a round of talks in the Dominican Republic today (13 September), France’s foreign minister said yesterday, warning Caracas that it risked EU sanctions if it failed to engage in negotiations.

Subscribe to our newsletters

Subscribe