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US moves to ease a few economic sanctions on Venezuela

The United States government is moving to ease a few economic sanctions on Venezuela in a gesture meant to encourage resumed negotiations between the US-backed opposition and the government of President Nicolás Maduro.

The limited changes will allow Chevron Corp to negotiate its licence with the state-owned oil company, Petroleos de Venezuela (PDVSA), but not to drill or export any petroleum of Venezuelan origin, two senior US government officials told The Associated Press late Monday. The officials spoke on the condition of anonymity because the formal announcement had not been made.

Additionally, Carlos Erik Malpica-Flores — a former high-ranking PDVSA official and nephew of Venezuela’s first lady — will be removed from a list of sanctioned individuals, they said.

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The moves follow goodwill gestures by Maduro after meeting in March with representatives of the administration of President Joe Biden and a recent gathering in Central America between US officials and the main Unitary Platform opposition coalition to discuss a path forward.

“These are things that … the Unitary Platform negotiated and came to us to request that we do in order for them to be able to return to the negotiating table,” one of the officials said.

Read more: Al Jazeera

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