On 28 March, the Federal Council adopted restrictive measures against Venezuela. As such Switzerland is aligning itself with the sanctions imposed by the EU as a result of human rights violations and the undermining of the rule of law and democratic institutions. The Ordinance on Measures against Venezuela enters into force on 28 March.

The measures adopted by the Federal Council include an arms and repressive goods embargo and financial and travel sanctions against Venezuela. It bans the sale, supply, export and transit to Venezuela of arms and goods which can be used for internal repression. A similar ban also applies to equipment, technology and software that can be used to monitor and intercept internet and telephone communications. Furthermore, assets have been frozen and entry and transit bans have been issued for listed natural persons, companies and organisations. These measures are currently directed against seven Venezuelan ministers and high-ranking officials. Assets frozen under the measures must be reported to SECO without delay.

The Federal Council is seriously concerned by the repeated violations of individual freedoms in Venezuela, where the principle of separation of powers is severely undermined and the process in view of the forthcoming elections suffers from a serious lack of legitimacy. It calls on Venezuela to restore the integrity of the electoral process and to promote an inclusive democratic environment that fully respects its constitutional and legal framework and its international obligations

By adopting the Ordinance of 28 March 2018, Switzerland is aligning itself with the EU sanctions against Venezuela. The measures described will enter into force at 6pm on 28 March.