Washington D.C. – Ranking Member Eliot Engel, the senior Democratic member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, released the following statement regarding Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro’s expulsion of U.S. embassy personnel.

“President Maduro's expulsion of our embassy personnel continues a well worn pattern of measures designed to shore up his weak political hand and distract Venezuelans from the serious problems they face at home. His use of our diplomatic personnel to score political points is unacceptable and should not go unanswered.

I have requested a briefing from the State department regarding the expulsions, and, assuming this is as arbitrary as it looks, we will strongly encourage a swift reciprocal action.”