Rio Treaty nations move to further isolate Venezuela

Representatives from over a dozen nations that are signatories to a Cold War-era defense treaty for the Americas moved Tuesday to further isolate close allies of Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro with economic sanctions

Representatives from over a dozen nations that are signatories to a Cold War-era defense treaty for the Americas moved Tuesday to further isolate close allies of Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro with economic sanctions.

The 1947 Rio Treaty signatories approve a declaration vowing to investigate, extradite and sanction Maduro government associates accused of corruption, drug trafficking, money laundering or human rights violations.

“The political, economic and social crisis in the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela represents a threat for the peace and security of the continent,” Colombian Foreign Minister Claudia Blum said in the meeting’s final remarks.

The 19 member nations have been treading cautiously in building up economic and diplomatic pressure on Venezuela while vowing not to invoke a provision in the treaty that authorizes military intervention. The accord instructs signatories to consider a threat against any one of them a danger to all.

Colombian President Iván Duque contends that Maduro is offering a safe haven to rebel factions of the National Liberation Army and dissidents with the former Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, an assertion the Venezuelan leader denies. Duque urged that nations embark on tougher sanctions going forward.

“Here there’s no invitation for use of force,” he said.

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