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Venezuela Bans Opposition Leader Guaido From Politics

Venezuela has banned opposition leader Juan Guaido from holding public officer for a period of 15 years, according to Reuters, citing state comptroller Elvis Amoroso.

Amoroso said the move was made after irregular financial disclosures and alleged spending that did not match his income. The investigation began sometime in February, just days after he declared himself interim president of the Latin American nation. Guaido has already been subject to a travel ban and frozen bank accounts pending Venezuela’s Supreme Court investigation that it undertook in January into “serious crimes violating constitutional order”.

Inside Venezuela Guaido has a tough road to hold, but outside of Venezuela, Guaido has found the favor of the United States and much of the rest of the world, a favor that calls into question just how long Maduro will be able to hold onto power.

Speaking of power, that’s something that Venezuela is finding itself short on in recent weeks, as it suffered two major blackouts that halted oil production and oil exports from a country that holds the largest oil reserves in the world.

On Wednesday, Guaido announced that a mass mobilization plan was underway called “Operation Freedom”, a plan that was designed to force Maduro to step down. Guaido called on the masses to take to the streets to protest the recent power outages that the Maduro regime claims is an act of sabotage by the United States.

Oil production and exports have declined steadily over the last few years, and there seems to be no end in sight to this freefall. Venezuela shuttered its largest oil-exporting terminal on Sunday due to the blackouts, restricting its oil exports even further. The port is essential for Venezuela as it must continue to ship oil to China and Russia to repay sizable loans.

By Julianne Geiger for Oilprice.com

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