WASHINGTON— The Obama administration has revoked the visa of the Venezuelan ambassador to the United States in a retaliatory move after Venezuela rejected the US choice to be the next envoy to the South American country.
A diplomat familiar with the situation said the decision to revoke Bernardo Alvarez Herrera's visa came after Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez withdrew his approval of the administration's choice to represent the US in Caracas, Larry Palmer. The diplomat said Alvarez is currently not in the US.
The diplomat spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak publicly on the matter. The State Department earlier Wednesday declined to comment on Chavez's moves, citing visa privacy concerns, but said Venezuela would face consequences for its refusal to accept the choice of Palmer.
Chavez has said he will not accept Palmer to be ambassador due to comments he made earlier this year suggesting that morale is low in Venezuela's military and that he is concerned Colombian rebels are finding refuge in Venezuela.