Venezuela on Monday denounced Washington’s decision to impose more U.S. travel restrictions on government officials, calling the measure an act of “psychological and political terrorism.”
On Sunday, President Donald Trump signed a proclamation that extends the existing travel restrictions on citizens from Iran, Libya, Somalia, Syria and Yemen. Chad, North Korea, Iraq and Venezuela were added in the expanded action.
In the decree, the White House said Venezuela’s government “fails to share public-safety and terrorism-related information adequately” and has been “not fully cooperative” in receiving deportees.
The Venezuelan portion of the travel ban, therefore, focuses “on the government officials of Venezuela who are responsible for the inadequacies.”
Among those affected are members of Venezuela’s interior ministry, justice department, foreign ministry, the CIPIC criminal investigation unit and the SEBIN Bolivarian National Intelligence Service. The ban, which goes into effect Oct. 18, also includes their immediate family members.
Venezuelans who are already visa holders “should be subject to appropriate additional measures to ensure traveler information remains current,” the order states.
Venezuela’s Foreign Ministry called the move a “hostile” attempt to “stigmatize our nation under the pretext of fighting terrorism” and it questioned the legality of the measure.
Dozens of Venezuelan officials had already been barred from entering the United States under several rounds of targeted sanctions. It’s unclear how disruptive these new restrictions might be, or the implications for Venezuela’s diplomatic corps in Washington and New York.
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