By Ronan Manly | 2 February 2019
ZERO HEDGE (BULLION STAR) — In early November 2018, it first came to light that the Bank of England in London was delaying and blocking the withdrawal of 14 tonnes of gold owned by the Venezuelan central bank, Banco Central de Venezuela (BCV). At the time, Reuters and The Times of London both reported that according to unnamed British ‘public officials’, the delays were being caused by the difficulty and cost of obtaining insurance for the gold shipment back to Venezuela, and also due to “standard measures to prevent money-laundering“.
As I explained in a BullionStar article on 15 November titled ‘Bank of England refuses to return 14 tonnes of gold to Venezuela’, the explanations given to Reuters and the Times for the withdrawal delays were completely bogus, and that the real reason for blocking the BCV gold withdrawal was undoubtedly US and UK joint government interventions to stall the withdrawal. As I wrote at the time:
“The reasons put forward by official sources in the Reuters and Times articles for why Venezuela can’t withdraw its gold from the Bank of England are clearly bogus. The more logical and likely explanation is that the US, through the White House, US Treasury and State Department have been liaising with the British Foreign office and HM Treasury to put pressure on the Bank of England to delay and push back on Venezuela’s gold withdrawal request.”
As it turns out, this was an entirely correct prediction, since by 25 January, Bloomberg confirmed in an ‘exclusive report’ (two and a half months later) that:
“The Bank of England’s decision to deny Maduro officials’ withdrawal request comes after top U.S. officials, including Secretary of StateMichael Pompeo and National Security Adviser John Bolton, lobbied their U.K. counterparts to help cut off the regime from its overseas assets, according to one of the people, who asked not to be identified.”
Why Bloomberg took so long to state the obvious is not clear, but from the outset, the entire interventionist playbook of the Americans and British in this saga has been entirely predictable to anyone observing the situation. This intervention by the Bank of England on behalf of the US and UK shows a complete disregard for sovereign gold property rights, and the Bank of England has now literally ripped up a custody gold storage agreement that it had entered into with another of the world’s central banks. […]