U.S. military intervention in Venezuela 'not an option': lawmaker
By Patricia Zengerle and Doina Chiacu
February 13, 2019 "Information Clearing House" - WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Congress will not support U.S. military intervention in Venezuela despite hints by President Donald Trump that such action had not been ruled out, the Democratic chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee said on Wednesday.
"I do worry about the president's saber rattling, his hints that U.S. military intervention remains an option. I want to make clear to our witnesses and to anyone else watching: U.S. military intervention is not an option," U.S. Representative Eliot Engel said at the opening of a hearing on the volatile political situation in the OPEC nation.
Under the U.S. Constitution, Congress has to approve foreign military action.
Engel also warned about the possible effects on the Venezuelan people of U.S. sanctions on state oil company PDVSA. The United States in January imposed sanctions aimed at limiting President Nicolas Maduro's access to oil revenue.
"I appreciate the need to squeeze Maduro," Engel said. "But the White House must think through the potential repercussions that these sanctions could have on the Venezuelan people if Maduro does not leave office in the coming weeks."
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