Venezuela officially withdraws from Organization of American States: Foreign Minister
Caracas, Apr 27 (Sputnik) Venezuelan Foreign Minister Jorge Arreaza said on Saturday that Venezuela is officially no longer a part of the Organization of the American States (OAS).
Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro announced the decision to leave the bloc in 2017, supporting an immediate withdrawal of the country from the OAS, although the procedure usually takes two years.
The OAS did not recognize Maduro's new presidential term that began on January 10.
"From today [Saturday], the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela does not belong to the OAS, we have met all the deadlines and fulfilled the will of the Venezuelan people," Arreaza said during a march of government supporters in Caracas.
Commenting on the recent US sanctions against him, Arreaza said that his only bank account was an account in a Venezuelan state bank, to which his salary was transferred.
On Friday, the US Treasury Department's Office of Foreign Assets Control imposed sanctions on Arreaza and Venezuelan Judge Carol Padilla.
In his speech at the United Nations earlier this week the top diplomat slammed the United States for its alleged efforts to dominate the United Nations and denounced the US call on other members of the organization to recognize the government of Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido who has proclaimed himself the country’s interim president.
The United States has targeted Venezuelan officials and businesses with multiple sanctions in recent months amid its campaign to force Maduro from power.
While the United States and more than 50 other nations have recognized Guaido, Maduro has called him a US puppet and said the United States has attempted to orchestrate a coup in Venezuela to effect a change of government and claim the country’s resources.
China, Russia, Bolivia, Turkey and numerous other nations recognize Maduro as the only legitimate president of Venezuela.