MAJOR: Trump suggests for US Navy to blockade Venezuela

WASHINGTON DC – US President Donald Trump reportedly consulted with his advisers on the possibility of imposing a naval blockade on Venezuela.

According to media reports, citing US government officials, the US president has suggested extensive use of the US Navy along the Venezuelan coast.

The measure, according to sources familiar with the matter, would impede international trade in the country, reported the portal Axios Media.

“He literally just said we should get the ships out there and do a naval embargo,” said an Axios source.

“I’m assuming he’s thinking of the Cuban missile crisis,” the source added. “But Cuba is an island and Venezuela is a massive coastline. And Cuba we knew what we were trying to prevent from getting in. But here what are we talking about? It would need massive, massive amounts of resources; probably more than the U.S. Navy can provide.”

According to the portal sources, the US Department of Defense was informed about Trump’s proposal, but did not take the idea seriously, noting that this project has no legal basis and would also consume resources the Navy does not have.

Although Trump has ruled out military intervention in the South American country, the portal’s interlocutors say that the US president intends to maintain increasing pressure on Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro.

The Axios report also states: “Hawkish GOP Sen. Lindsey Graham, a close Trump ally, has a different perspective about the value of a show of military force. “I’ve been saying for months that when the Venezuelan military sees an American military presence gathering force, this thing ends pretty quickly.”

Meanwhile, US sanctions against Venezuela caused a 7 percent reduction in Venezuela’s GDP between 2013 and 2017.

Venezuela recorded a fall in its Gross Domestic Product, Sputnik Mundo Aníbal García Fernández, a member of the Latin American Strategic Center for Geopolitics (CELAG) , told Sputnik.

“The US blockade of Venezuela has caused the country to lose more than 7% of GDP over the past five years, which has meant that many people have no access to food and medicine,” said Fernández, who has been investigating for several years the impact the measures imposed by the US has.

The US president tightened sanctions against Venezuela on Tuesday, freezing all Venezuelan government assets on US territory owned or controlled by US citizens.

Trump’s decree applies to the State and Government of Venezuela, any political subdivision, agency or its structure, including the Central Bank of Venezuela and state-owned Petroleos de Venezuela (PDVSA).

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