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Canada to expel Venezuelan ambassador, charge d'affaires

Staff Writer |
Canada will expel a Venezuelan diplomat and also bar the country’s ambassador from returning, Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland said after Venezuela booted out Canada’s envoy for criticizing its rights record.

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"The Venezuelan government has announced that Canada’s chargé d’affaires in Caracas has been declared persona non grata and will be expelled from the country.

"This action is typical of the Maduro regime, which has consistently undermined all efforts to restore democracy and to help the Venezuelan people," said Freeland.

"Canadians will not stand by as the Government of Venezuela robs its people of their fundamental democratic and human rights, and denies them access to basic humanitarian assistance.

"In response to this move by the Maduro regime, I am announcing that the Venezuelan Ambassador to Canada – who had already been withdrawn by the Venezuelan government to protest Canadian sanctions against Venezuelan officials implicated in corruption and gross human rights abuses – is no longer welcome in Canada.

"I am also declaring the Venezuelan chargé d’affaires persona non grata."

Canada in September, following a similar move by the United States, imposed targeted sanctions against 40 Venezuelan senior officials, including Maduro, to punish them for “anti-democratic behavior.”

The ministers of defense and the interior as well as several Supreme Court judges were also among those targeted by the measures.

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