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Venezuela settles $1.2 billion creditor claim to protect Citgo

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FILE PHOTO: PDVSA’s U.S. unit Citgo Petroleum refinery is pictured in Sulphur, Louisiana, U.S., June 12, 2018. REUTERS/Jonathan Bachman/File Photo

(Reuters) – Cash-strapped Venezuela settled a $1.2 billion arbitration claim that will protect its crown jewel foreign asset, the Houston-based Citgo Petroleum Corp refining business, from being stripped away by a creditor, according to Canadian court documents.

The deal with Crystallex International Corp suspends the Canadian mining company’s push for a court-ordered auction of control of Citgo as a way of collecting on an arbitration award against Venezuela that has grown to more than $1.4 billion with interest.

Reporting by Tom Hals in Wilmington, Delaware; Editing by David Gregorio

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