U.S. looking at new sanctions against Venezuela: U.S. official

U.S. National Security Adviser John Bolton gives an interview to Fox News outside of the White House in Washington, U.S., March 5, 2019. REUTERS/Leah Millis

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The United States is considering imposing new sanctions on Venezuela to increase pressure on President Nicolas Maduro’s government to give up power, U.S. national security adviser John Bolton said on Tuesday.

“We’re looking at new sanctions, new measures to tighten our grip on Maduro’s financial wherewithal, to deny his regime the money that they need to stay in power,” Bolton told Fox Business Network.

Washington views opposition leader Juan Guaido as Venezuela’s legitimate leader and has imposed sanctions on the country’s oil sector and announced asset freezes and travel bans targeting top government officials.

Earlier on Tuesday, Washington’s top envoy for Venezuela, Elliott Abrams, said imposing U.S. secondary sanctions against non-U.S. citizens or entities tied to the Maduro government was “clearly a possibility,” although he said a decision had not been made on taking such a step.

Reporting by Eric Beech; Editing by Sandra Maler