Supporters of Venezuela's opposition leader and self proclaimed president Juan Guaido, hold sign against President Nicolas Maduro as they cheer during a rally in Maracay, Venezuela, Friday, April 26, 2019. The Trump administration has added Venezuelan Foreign Minister Jorge Arreaza to a Treasury Department sanctions target list as it increases pressure on Guaido's opponent, embattled President Nicolas Maduro. (AP Photo/Fernando Llano)

US adds Venezuela foreign minister to sanctions target list

April 26, 2019 - 10:57 am

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Trump administration on Friday added the Venezuelan foreign minister to a Treasury Department sanctions target list as it increases pressure on embattled President Nicolas Maduro.

Foreign Minister Jorge Arreaza along with a judge have been added to a growing list of Venezuelan officials designated for sanctions by the Treasury Department.

The designation of Arreaza and Judge Carol Bealexis Padilla de Arretureta freezes any assets they have in the United States and prohibits any U.S. citizens or entities from having financial dealings with them.

Arreaza is a prominent figure in the Maduro government who has represented Venezuela at the United Nations amid the deep political and economic crisis in the South American country.

The judge approved the jailing of an opposition lawmaker last year in connection with an apparent assassination attempt of the president. She reportedly also approved the detention of a top aide to the opposition head of the National Assembly, Juan Guaido.

Adding them to the list is part of an effort by the Trump administration to press Maduro to leave office. The U.S. and more than 50 other governments view Maduro's re-election last year as illegitimate and have recognized Guaido as interim president.

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