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Tillerson Says US Weighing Sanctions On Venezuelan Oil Industry

Tillerson Says US Weighing Sanctions On Venezuelan Oil Industry

Tillerson said at a news conference in Buenos Aires.

Tillerson did not push back against the suggestion that sanctions on oil might also hurt U.S. companies that have built refineries in the southern United States geared to accept Venezuelan crude.

"Obviously sanctioning the oil, or in effect prohibiting the oil to be sold in the United States.is something we continue to consider", he told reporters on Sunday.

But Rex Tillerson wanted to find ways to soften the negative impact that sanctions would have on American oil companies, Venezuelans and other countries in the region that rely on Venezuelan oil.

Banning exports of oil or refined oil products to Venezuela was also on the table, Tillerson added.

"While this trade has brought benefits, the unfair trading practices used by many Chinese have also harmed those countries' manufacturing sectors, generating unemployment and lowering wages for workers", the US Secretary of State said.

Colombia's ambassador to Washington, Camilo Reyes, said ahead of the visit "as we continue to build a stable and lasting peace, we are grateful for the long-standing bilateral partnership and the bipartisan support of the United States".

As the US Secretary of State embarks upon his voyage across the region that the United States has long considered its own backyard since the implementation of the Monroe Doctrine in 1823, it's unclear exactly how receptive the countries he's about to visit will be to his message.

The Venezuelan government has announced that Maduro will be the presidential candidate for the upcoming elections. "If he wants to step aside and let someone else follow through on that, that's fine, but our view is you must return to the constitution, and that's what we hope Venezuela ultimately will do".

"And then, if he is not re-elected by the people, so be it", Tillerson said.

Maduro shot back, in a video on Facebook, saying that Tillerson "has just threatened us with an oil boycott". Analysts have noted that this is a way of bypassing USA sanctions and is similar to an ordinary bond.

Tillerson visited the Argentine Patagonia during his recent five-nation tour of Latin America and planned to ride horseback into the Nahuel Huapi national park, according to the Los Angeles Times.

In a prelude to the tour, the secretary of state made thinly veiled reference to USA support of a military coup in Venezuela to overturn the Maduro government at the University of Texas at Austin, last Thursday.


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