WASHINGTON, DC—Representative Eliot L. Engel, the leading Democrat on the House Committee on Foreign Affairs, today made the following statement regarding the announcement of new visa restrictions on those responsible for human rights abuses in Venezuela:

“In recent months, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro has stifled the democratic aspirations of the Venezuelan people as his security forces have cracked down on peaceful protesters. The Obama Administration’s announcement today of visa restrictions against human rights violators in Venezuela is a welcome step. This targeted action is consistent with U.S. policy throughout the world. When human rights are violated in the Americas or any other corner of the globe, we must be clear that those responsible are not welcome in the United States. I urge our partners throughout the Western Hemisphere to stand with the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights in calling out these abuses and to consider taking targeted actions against Venezuela’s most egregious human rights violators.”