WASHINGTON, Jan 25 (Reuters) – The United States will bar former Panamanian President Ricardo Martinelli and his immediate family from entering the country, accusing him of accepting bribes, U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken said on Wednesday.

Martinelli, who was in office from 2009 to 2014, “accepted bribes in exchange for improperly awarding government contracts during his tenure as the president,” Blinken said in a statement.

Reporting by Eric Beech; Editing by Jacqueline Wong

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