14ymedio, Havana, July 8, 2020 – The U.S. Department of Energy published a warning this Wednesday in the Federal Register that includes Venezuela, China, Iran and North Korea on its list of “foreign adversaries”. According to El Nuevo Herald, the Department’s decision is part of the implementation of an executive order signed in May by President Donald Trump.
This order is meant to protect the facilities and control systems necessary for operating the power grid from the “malicious activities” of foreign actors, and it orders the Department of Energy to define them.
In the Department’s consideration and based on reports from the intelligence community, according to the same newspaper, the countries mentioned could attack the U.S. power grid.
Other countries considered sponsors of terrorism, like Syria and Sudan, have been taken off the list.
The executive order, specifies El Nuevo Herald, defines the term “foreign adversaries” as governments and foreign actors that have shown “a long-term pattern or conduct significantly adverse to the national security of the United States”.
The Department specifies that the foreign actors indicated “are employing innovative combinations of traditional spying, economic espionage and supply chain and cyber operations to gain access to the energy infrastructure” in the United States.
The executive order prohibits the acquisition of equipment or software from these countries that could make the U.S. power grid vulnerable to cyberattacks.
Although it’s unlikely that U.S. businesses would import software from Cuba and Venezuela because of possible sanctions, says the Miami newspaper, the designation of both countries as “adversaries” adds to the “maximum pressure campaign” that the administration launched last year to force the Venezuelan leader, Nicolás Maduro, to leave power.
In May, the Department of State returned to including Cuba on its list of countries that “don’t cooperate completely” with the U.S. in the struggle against terrorism, a measure that prohibits the sale of arms to the Island and that also affects Venezuela, Iran, Syria and North Korea.
Translated by Regina Anavy
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