Russian deputy FM says U.S. military interference in Venezuela unacceptable

MOSCOW, March 18 (Rahnuma): Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said Sunday that he will oppose any military interference in Venezuela in a meeting with U.S. Special Representative for Venezuela Elliott Abrams in Rome on Tuesday, Sputnik news agency reported.

“We have a whole number of stances that we will be communicating to the U.S. side: the inadmissibility of military interference on the part of the United States, the inadmissibility of other forms of pressure on the legitimate authorities in Caracas,” Ryabkov was quoted by Sputnik as saying.

The diplomat said he will also discuss with Abrams about U.S. pressure on Russian companies’ business with Venezuelan firms. He reiterated that Russia will continue to cooperate with Venezuela in the energy and defense sectors.

The U.S. Treasury Department on Monday imposed sanctions on Evrofinance Mosnarbank, a Moscow-based bank jointly owned by Russian and Venezuelan state-owned companies, for “attempting to circumvent U.S. sanctions on Venezuela.”

The Russian Foreign Ministry said that sanctions imposed outside the framework of the UN Security Council could not be considered legitimate.

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo also accused Russian oil giant Rosneft of continuing to purchase oil from Venezuela’s state-owned oil company PDVSA in defiance of U.S. sanctions.

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