Thursday 14/11/2019 - 07:40 pm


Venezuela crisis: Migrants dash to cross Peru border


2019.06.15 05:43

 Thousands of Venezuelans have rushed to cross into Peru in a bid to beat the introduction of tougher migration laws.

 
Under new laws introduced on Saturday, Venezuelans need to have a passport and visa to enter Peru.
 
Authorities say about 6,000 Venezuelans crossed from neighbouring Ecuador alone on Thursday, three times the daily average.
 
Some four million people have fled Venezuela since 2015, according to the United Nations.
 
The countrys imploding economy has resulted in high unemployment and shortages of food and medicine, and hundreds of thousands of people are said to be in need of humanitarian aid.
 
Previously, Venezuelan citizens wanting to enter Peru only required a national ID card.
 
Marianni Luzardo was travelling to Perus northern border with her two daughters on Friday. "In Venezuela it is almost impossible to get a passport," she told the Associated Press. "We need to get to Peru soon."
 
Perus President Martin Vizcarra defended the tougher migration restrictions on Thursday.
 
"Our country has opened its arms to more than 800,000 Venezuelans," he told reporters at an event in the northern city of Piura. "I think its completely logical and justified to ask them to bring visas to ensure better control of who enters."
 
Latin American countries host the vast majority of Venezuelan migrants and refugees. Colombia has the most at 1.3 million, followed by Peru with 768,000, according to UN figures.
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