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As Trump Adds Sanctions on Venezuela, Its Neighbors Reject Election Result

His administration has been selling off debt held by government entities, including accounts receivable, for a pittance of its worth, the United States officials said, and has pocketed the cash, leaving Venezuela’s finances in shambles.

The sanctions fall short of direct penalties on the oil sector, which the Trump administration has said would harm the Venezuelan people and American companies. They do not bar United States companies or citizens from selling oil products to or importing them from Venezuela.

Dimitris Pantoulas, a political consultant in Caracas, said the high abstention rate in the vote undercut Mr. Maduro’s legitimacy at home, “showing we could be very close to the end of this government.”

As Trump Adds Sanctions on Venezuela, Its Neighbors Reject Election Result
As Trump Adds Sanctions on Venezuela, Its Neighbors Reject Election Result

But he said the international pressure against Mr. Maduro had been blunted by the deep divisions in the opposition. Many top leaders left the country before the vote, and urged their supporters not to boycott Mr. Maduro’s chief rival, Henri Falcón, who supported much of the opposition’s political and economic agenda.

Mr. Falcón received roughly 21 percent of the vote, compared with 68 percent for Mr. Maduro, according to the official tally. Still, Mr. Maduro received fewer than six million votes, the lowest number of ballots cast for a winner in years.

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