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Maduro announced an emergency in the national oil industry due to US sanctions

UNITED STATES (OBSERVATORY NEWS) — Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro signed a decree on Wednesday on a major reform in the oil industry to protect against US sanctions and created a presidential commission for this.

“I declare a state of emergency in the oil industry by constitutional and presidential decree in order to take urgent and necessary measures to ensure the country’s energy security and protect industry from imperialist aggression,” Maduro said at a meeting with oil industry workers. The president’s statement was broadcast on his Twitter account.

“Article 2 creates a plenipotentiary presidential commission for the protection, restructuring and reorganization of the national oil industry,” the head of state added. According to Maduro, the commission will have the necessary powers to transform the entire oil industry from A to Z.

The United States on Tuesday added the Swiss Rosneft Trading SA, a structure of Rosneft, and its chairman of the board of directors, Didier Casimiro, to the list of Venezuelan sanctions, the US Treasury said. Kashimiro also holds the position of Vice President for Refining, Petrochemicals, Commerce and Logistics at Rosneft, and is a member of its board.

The United States gives 90 days to its allies, particularly in Europe, to break off relations with Rosneft Trading. Earlier, the United States accused Rosneft and its subsidiaries of supplying Venezuelan oil to foreign markets.

In Venezuela, on January 21, 2019, mass protests began against President Nicolas Maduro shortly after being sworn in. The head of the National Assembly, controlled by the opposition, Juan Guaido illegally proclaimed himself the interim head of state.

A number of Western countries led by the United States announced the recognition of Guaido. In turn, Maduro called the head of parliament a US puppet. Russia, China, Turkey and several other countries supported Maduro as a legitimate president. In Moscow, they called the “presidential status” of Guaido nonexistent.

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