Venezuela’s President Nicolas Maduro has ordered the European Union’s ambassador to vacate the country within 72 hours.
Isabel Brilhante Pedrosa’s expulsion came hours after the EU placed sanctions on 11 Venezuelan officials. The sanction was placed due to acting against the national assembly headed by opposition leader Juan Guaido.
The opposition side has backing from the US and EU. Speaking of the EU, Mr Maduro said on Monday, “If they cannot respect Venezuela, then they should leave it.”
On the same day, the European Council said the 11 officials were added to the sanctions list because of their role in acts and decisions undermining democracy and the rule of law in Venezuela. We now have 36 Venezuelan officials who have been placed under EU sanctions.
His position at the head of the opposition-led National Assembly was the basis of Mr Guaido’s claim to be Venezuela’s legitimate Head of State. More than 50 countries including the US, UK and most Latin America and the EU.
According to the United Nations, there has been a political and economic crisis for years, some four million people have fled Venezuela since 2015.
The country suffers from high unemployment and shortages of food and medicine, and hundreds of people are said to be in need of humanitarian aid.