Venezuelan leader releases jailed US oil executive

Nfter talks between the USA and Venezuela against the background of the Russian war of aggression in Ukraine, a former US oil manager imprisoned in the South American crisis state is said to have been released. “We have been informed that one of Citgo’s managers, Gustavo Cárdenas, has indeed been released from prison,” Gonzalo Himiob, Vice President of Venezuela’s Foro Penal NGO, wrote on Twitter on Tuesday. The Reuters news agency also reported on the release, citing insiders.

High-ranking representatives of the US government traveled to Venezuela at the weekend to talk about energy issues, among other things. Six former US oil managers, the so-called “Citgo 6”, had been sentenced to long prison terms in Venezuela. Observers interpreted the release of one of the “Citgo 6” as a goodwill gesture on the part of the authoritarian government of Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro.

Venezuela has the largest oil reserves in the world

The US has banned imports of Russian oil over the attack on Ukraine. US President Joe Biden must close the supply gap created by the embargo. Venezuela, which is relatively close to the US, is the country with the largest oil reserves in the world, but has also been subject to numerous US sanctions. The relaxation of these sanctions was recently discussed.

Along with Cuba and Nicaragua, Venezuela is one of Russia’s closest allies in Latin America. After the Russian attack on Ukraine, Venezuela backed the Kremlin.

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