U.S. Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL), Chairman of the Middle East and North Africa Subcommittee, made the following statement on the continuing human rights situation in Venezuela and the unjust trial against pro-democracy leaders in Venezuela. Statement by Ros-Lehtinen:
"Maduro's human rights violations continue unabated in Venezuela with no action from the Obama administration. This kangaroo court is politically motivated and seeks to silence the people of Venezuela in order to continue the mockery of justice for which this regime has become notorious. The goal of the authoritarian regime is to deny ordinary Venezuelans their basic freedoms and persecute its political opponents with impunity.
"Instead of letting hundreds of pro-democracy leaders languish unjustly in jail as prisoners of conscience, the Obama Administration and the Senate must support H.R. 4587 -- the Venezuela Human Rights and Democracy Protection Act -- sanctioning the Maduro regime for gross human rights violations, which passed the House of Representatives almost two months ago.
"Since the unrest in Venezuela began, the Obama administration has issued sanctions targeting the Democratic Republic of the Congo, South Sudan, Russia, and the Central African Republic, so why are the people of Venezuela less deserving? It's now time for President Obama and the Senate to show that they are serious about the cause of democracy and liberty for the people of Venezuela and issue the sanctions immediately."