December 05, 2019

Senators Menendez and Rubio Introduce Reauthorization of the Venezuela Defense of Human Rights and Civil Society Act

Legislation Extends Targeted Sanctions in Response to Continued Violations of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms

WASHINGTON – Senator Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), Ranking Member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, and Senator Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee’s Subcommittee on the Western Hemisphere, last night introduced the Venezuela Defense of Human Rights and Civil Society Extension Act of 2019

This bipartisan legislation reauthorizes 2014 law that imposed mandatory targeted sanctions on Maduro regime officials involved in serious human rights violations and the curtailing of Venezuelans’ fundamental freedoms.

“As the expanding body of evidence continues to expose the Maduro regime’s complicity in torture and the extrajudicial killings of thousands of Venezuelans, the United States will not waiver in its commitment to the human rights of the Venezuelan people,” said Menendez. “This legislation is a clear message to Maduro and his criminal regime that they will be held accountable for their heinous acts.  Now is not the time for the international community to give up on the Venezuelan people; now is the time to be consistent, bold and forward-thinking in crafting a diplomatic strategy that increases international pressure on Maduro and helps forge a peaceful and democratic solution to this crisis.”

“I’m proud to once again join my colleague Senator Menendez in co-sponsoring this legislation, which will continue to allow President Trump to impose sanctions against individuals who disrupt democratic governance in Venezuela,” said Rubio. “As dictator Nicolás Maduro continues his illegitimate grip on power, we reaffirm our commitment to the Venezuelan people and their fight to restore democratic order and the rule of law in their nation.”

Congress approved the Venezuela Defense of Human Rights and Civil Society Act in December 2014 and passed the first reauthorization of the bill in July 2016. 



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