Maduro: Sanctions on Russia "madness", crimes against Russians
The Venezuelan president calls for the abandonment of the dollar.
Commenting on the sanctions that have been imposed on Russia, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro described them as a crime against the Russian people, and "madness."
"Look what they [West] are doing with Russia: this is a crime against the Russian people, an economic war. They [Russia] are excluded from the SWIFT system, the airspace for them is closed, all the trading ties are suspended, the access to US dollar is banned. This is madness what they [West] are doing with Russia," Maduro said late Wednesday.
Maduro called the use of the US dollar in financial and trade systems to be put to an end, as the currency is used as a weapon in economic wars.
In addition to the sanctions on Russian banks, businessmen, politicians, lawmakers and closing airspace to Russian aircraft, yesterday, the bans have gone as far as banning Dostoevsky in an Italian university, and banning Russian cats.
Last week, the Venezuelan foreign ministry called for a peaceful solution to the conflict in Ukraine, condemning "illegal sanctions" and economic aggression against the Russian people, which affect human rights.
In a statement, Venezuela expressed concern over the recent developments after Putin authorized military operation in Ukraine, condemning Ukraine's violation of the Minsk Agreements with pressure from the United States.
Sanctions will backfire
Former US colonel and Eurasia Center Vice President, Earl Rasmussen, said that the European Union's latest sanctions and economic retaliation against Russia will backfire and cause a massive recession in Europe.
The EU has banned Russian Central Bank transactions as part of their sanctions, closed European airspace to Russian aircraft, and is working to exclude Russia from the international transaction system SWIFT.
Rasmussen said that the European sanctions against Russia will throw Europe into a "historical recession."
British Petroleum will also be dumping its stake in Rosneft, a Russian petroleum company. Dutch oil company Shell also said that it will be backing out of joint ventures with Gazprom and Gazprom Neft, including the Sakhalin II project while also canceling its involvement in the Nord Stream 2 pipeline. Nord Stream 2 has recently had its license revoked by Germany.
Rasmussen warned that the decision by Berlin, strongly pressured by the Biden administration, will send energy costs spiraling wildly out of control not just in Germany but in surrounding nations too.
"Energy markets will peak. My colleagues in Europe tell me that prices are already up 30%. They will go much higher, perhaps twice as high, maybe more," he said.
Rasmussen stated that despite repeated assurances from Biden, Washington is in no condition to replace Russia’s plentiful and cheap supplies of natural gas to Europe with any alternative energy supply that is remotely comparable in either scale or cost.
"How will Europe replace Russia’s gas? It will not! Welcome global austerity!" he said, noting that Russia is one of the world's largest gas exporters with larges reserves.
"EU leaders have made a huge mistake. Russian gas will not be replaced - impossible. Also, the gas [to be] replaced will be significantly more expensive, perhaps two to four times more expensive," he said.