- Associated Press - Monday, March 31, 2014

MIAMI (AP) - Gov. Rick Scott is sending a petition to the White House pushing for sanctions against Venezuelan leaders.

The Florida governor met with members of Miami’s large Venezuelan community on Monday.

Scott said the petition now has more than 1,000 signatures. It calls for bank account freezes, visa bans and other sanctions against Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro and anyone involved in violence against protesters.

Venezuela has been embroiled in ongoing protests over the country’s high crime rate, inflation and political discontent since mid-February. More than 30 people have died.

U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio and Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen have also introduced resolutions in Congress calling for action against Venezuela.

The U.S. State Department has urged Venezuela to liberate incarcerated opposition members and respect human rights.

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