Venezuela's El Aissami complained to creditors about global financial pressure

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro

His chief negotiators Vice President Tareck El Aissami and Economy Minister Simon Zerpa - both on U.S. sanctions lists for drug and corruption charges respectively - entered the building at around 3 p.m. local time (1900 GMT) and then departed around 20 minutes later.

In a joint statement, all 28 EU ministers said the legal basis for individual travel bans to the EU and the freezing of any Venezuelan assets in the bloc "will be used in a gradual and flexible manner and can be expanded".

On the streets, Venezuelans know little of the ins and outs of the complex debt debate, but they are praying for an improvement to dire hardships. Citi declined to comment. "We always have a clear strategy and the strategy is to renegotiate the foreign debt", said Maduro as quoted by Antara/Reuters. “They have assured that they are working on it (payment of dues).

Venezuela, which is facing the world's highest inflation rate, has seen widespread food shortages in recent years in part because of its failing socialist revolution.

And while we commend India's camaraderie, Venezuela may be declared insolvent as soon as Friday morning.

The ratings agency said it would raise its long-term foreign currency sovereign issuer credit and issue ratings to 'CC' if Venezuela solved its default on the overdue coupons and remains timely on other payments before the restructuring is completed.

For those who did attend, a red carpet awaited them at the entrance, and a poster of Maduro's predecessor Hugo Chavez at the entrance to the meeting room, witnesses said.

As a result, an official declaration of default may be imminent: according to Bloomberg, ISDA has agreed to review a request to determine whether an event of default has occurred due to delayed principal payments on the Petroleos de Venezuela SA bond that matured Nov. 2.

"Our CreditWatch negative reflects our opinion that there is a one-in-two chance that Venezuela could default again within the next three months", S&P said in its statement.

"Default will never reach Venezuela". She was responding to reporter Marc Perelman's claim that 300,000 children are at risk of dying of hunger in Venezuela.

In anticipation of the default, international banks and suppliers have reduced, and in most cases halted, credit to PDVSA since cash flow problems led the firm to start delaying payments to creditors in 2014. U.S. sanctions have made it practically impossible for Venezuela to refinance debt because U.S. banks cannot buy newly issued Venezuelan bonds.

Last Thursday, the United States put financial sanctions on another 10 current and former Venezuelan officials over corruption and abuse of power allegations related to Mr Maduro's crackdown on the opposition. "It's a reality that Venezuela is under a U.S. military threat".

"In October 2015, General John Kelly, who spearheaded the U.S. Southern Command [at the time], said that if Venezuela underwent a humanitarian crisis, the U.S. would intervene militarily", she underscored.

The two sides in September held "exploratory meetings" with the backing of Dominican President Danilo Medina.

“Nobody will want to go near something that could be an OFAC violation, ” said Robert Koenigsberger, chief investment officer at Gramercy Funds Management, which dumped its Venezuela debt a year ago.

Representatives of Maduro's government were due to meet investors in Caracas on Monday to discuss renegotiating $60 billion in foreign debt. Investors last week were optimistic about the meeting.

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