- Title: Venezuela's opposition prepares U.S. lawsuit to defend Citgo - sources
- Date: 16th October 2019
- Summary: CARACAS, VENEZUELA (OCTOBER 15, 2019) (REUTERS) OPPOSITION LEADER JUAN GUAIDO ARRIVING GROUNDS OF NATIONAL ASSEMBLY, SURROUNDED BY MEDIA AND SUPPORTERS GUAIDO AT NEWS CONFERENCE (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) OPPOSITION LEADER, JUAN GUAIDO, SAYING: "They (Maduro government) indebted the nation and we are trying to do everything possible to protect overseas assets. Today there is a chance of losing Citgo if we do not do the right thing, if we do not approve this agreement today. We are going to see how those who call themselves patriots (government lawmakers) will act, lawmakers from the PSUV (United Socialist Party of Venezuela). This is to try and protect Citgo so it is not lost because of irregular borrowing." ASSEMBLY IN SESSION SPEAKER AT ASSEMBLY LAWMAKERS IN SESSION LAWMAKER DURING SESSION (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) LAWMAKER, ALFONSO MARQUINA, SAYING: "We have come to the National Assembly to ratify the declaration for nullfiying illegal, unconstitutional activity with the 2020 bonds that goes against the interests of the Venezuelan people. We are with the law and with the rights that have been awarded us as the legitimate representatives of the people, and the only ones who are authorised in the constitution to defend assets, so it doesn't fall into the hands of those who conduct improper business activities, playing with the hunger and misery of the people of Venezuela." MARQUINA ADDRESSING ASSEMBLY GUAIDO AT ASSEMBLY LAWMAKERS VOTING VARIOUS OF GUAIDO LEAVING ASSEMBLY SESSION
- Embargoed: 30th October 2019 01:02
- Keywords: Argentina debt Caracas Citgo United States PDVSA opposition leader Juan Guaido President Nicolas Maduro
- Location: CARACAS. VENEZUELA
- City: CARACAS. VENEZUELA
- Country: Venezuela
- Topics: Government/Politics
- Reuters ID: LVA001B1CJ7EV
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Advisors to Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido within days will file a lawsuit in the United States to prevent creditors from seizing shares in U.S. refiner Citgo, which was used as collateral for a bond issued by state oil company PDVSA, according to three sources with knowledge of the plan.
The PDVSA 2020 bond is expected to go into default this month when a $913 million payment comes due, because the cash-strapped company does not have the resources to pay.
Advisors to Guaido, who has been recognised by more than 50 countries as Venezuela's legitimate president, are preparing to ask a court to annul the bond. They argue that the government of President Nicolas Maduro did not obtain permission from the legislature to use Citgo as collateral.
PDVSA and Venezuela's information ministry did not reply to requests for comment.
Venezuela's legislature on Tuesday (October 15) ratified a 2016 resolution declaring the bond null. The resolution is the first step toward making the legal case in the United States, the three sources said.
Guaido allies appointed to control PDVSA's overseas assets in April coordinated a $71 million interest payment on the 2020 bond. That payment may make it difficult to convince a judge that the debt is illegitimate. Opposition leaders insist that payment does not undermine their argument that the bond is null and void.
Guaido has repeatedly asked Washington to step in with measures to prevent creditors from seizing Citgo. But the Trump administration has not shown interest in doing so.
(Production: Efrain Otero)
- Copyright Holder: REUTERS
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