Oil company Repsol, which serves 3,600 gas stations across Spain, has been threatened by America, unless it stops drilling in Venezuela.
It comes as President Trump puts pressure on Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro as the socialist president continues to flout US sanctions and put the nation into a deeper economic crisis.
Repsol were threatened by the US National Security Council.
Their director, Mauricio Claver-Carona, stated that: “There have been no exceptions for any company in the world (to continue drilling).”
The Venezuelan crisis, which began under presidency of Hugo Chávez has continued into the presidency of Maduro. It is marked by hyperinflation, escalating starvation, disease, crime and mortality rates, resulting in massive emigration from the country.
The Trump administration last November ordered Chevron Corp to wind down their operations in Venezuela, barring the California-based oil giant in the meantime from drilling or exporting.
The endless sanctions are a series of steps America has taken against President Maduro to push the end to his presidency and more than 20 years of socialist rule that critics blame for leading the once rich oil-producing nation to economic and political ruin.
After levying a series of financial and economic sanctions on Maduro and his allies, U.S. federal prosecutors have indicted Maduro as a drug trafficker, putting a $15 million bounty on his head, while sending warships and planes to intercept illegal drug shipments crossing the Caribbean Ocean headed for the U.S.
U.S. officials also unveiled plans for a transitional government to hold a presidential election years before Maduro’s current term ends. Maduro has rejected the demands of the U.S. and dozens of other nations that he resign, saying Washington is conspiring against Venezuela’s socialist revolution so it can steal its oil.
Other oil companies have been told to stop drilling in the Venezuela, including Russian energy company Rosneft Trading.
Spain PM Pedro Sanchez, recognises Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Gaido, as the de-facto leader.
The European Union shares the same view.