Venezuela

The U.S. State Department has expressed concern over the welfare of a Utah man jailed in Venezuela, a day after he managed to upload a video to Facebook saying inmates at his prison had seized the complex and were trying to kill him.

Rather than a sunny, uplifting campaign message, Henri Falcón, the main opposition candidate in Venezuela's May 20 presidential election, has settled on the more blunt "¡Se va!"

That's Spanish for: "He's leaving!"

Ariana Cubillos / AP via Miami Herald

COMMENTARY

If there were any doubts about the deadly madness of Venezuela’s dictatorial socialist regime, they were erased this week by a stunning Reuters report:

Venezuela’s state-run oil firm PDVSA has bought nearly $440 million worth of foreign crude and shipped it directly to Cuba on friendly credit terms – and often at a loss….”

Tim Padgett / WLRN.org

First of a three-part WLRN series, "Escape From Venezuela"

CÚCUTA, COLOMBIA | This is what the Venezuelan refugee crisis sounds like: the fists, knuckles and open palms of destitute – and above all hungry – Venezuelan migrants pounding on the metal gates of humanitarian relief stations here in the Colombian border city of Cúcuta.

Sonia Osorio

The Nicolás Maduro regime, already accused of destroying one of Latin America's most prosperous economies, is now ruining the finances of Venezuelans abroad who feel obligated to send much-needed assistance to relatives in the oil-producing country.

Many Venezuelans living in Miami spend $200 to $300 per month to buy food and ship it to relatives back home using freight companies. They also spend money on medicines, which are in short supply in Venezuela.

Tim Padgett / WLRN News

The Venezuelan refugee crisis is overwhelming South American countries—especially Colombia.

 

Last Friday, the U.N. had to suspend a new food stamp program for Venezuelans in the Colombian border city of Cúcuta because the crowds were simply too large and chaotic.

FERNANDO VERGARA / MIAMI HERALD

The refugee crisis in Venezuela is putting pressure on neighboring countries, especially Colombia. WLRN's Americas Correspondent Tim Padgett was in Cucuta, Colombia to get a closer view of the town where tens of thousands of Venezuelans are arriving once they cross the border.

Tim Padgett / WLRN.org

The Venezuelan refugee crisis is only worsening - and international aid raised so far to help hundreds of thousands of Venezuelans pouring into countries like Colombia is falling well short. As a result, the U.N. and other aid  groups are looking for new sources of funding.

Danny Hwang

South Florida’s Venezuelan community honored Florida Sen. Bill Nelson on Friday, April 13 - recognized in Miami-Dade County and other South Florida municipalities as the Day of the Venezuelan Exile -  by awarding him with the “Rómulo Betancourt Proclamation.”

The award is named after a former Venezuelan president considered “the father of Venezuelan democracy” and is given by the Venezuelan Organization of Politically Persecuted in Exile (VEPPEX).   

Sen. Nelson condemned Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro for making Venezuelans suffer.

Fernando Vergara / AP via Miami Herald

At a warehouse near Miami International Airport, Adelys Ferro is unpacking boxes and making a checklist of donated medicines for Venezuelans.

Associated Press

Five police officials are suspected of being responsible for a fire that killed 68 people in a police station jail in Venezuela and have been detained, the nation’s chief prosecutor said Saturday.

Tarek William Saab wrote on Twitter that the officials are believed “responsible for the tragic events that caused the death of 68 citizens” but provided no further details.

Among the detained is Jose Luis Rodriguez, sub-director of the police station in Valencia where a fire tore through cells where about 200 prisoners were being kept.

At least 68 people died when a fire broke out during a riot in the jail area of a police station in Venezuela, the country's chief prosecutor said late Wednesday.

Venezuela Attorney General Tarek William Saab wrote on Twitter that 66 of the victims were men, while two women who were visiting the police station overnight were also killed.

Evan Vucci / AP via Miami Herald

COMMENTARY

When Cuban dictator Fidel Castro died two years ago, then U.S. President Barack Obama issued a lame response: “History will record and judge the enormous impact of this singular figure on the people and world around him.”

Mister Rogers would have offered a tougher assessment of Castro, a communist caudillo whose repressive revolution has ruled Cuba for 59 years. When Obama’s statement reached Havana, you could hear regime apparatchiks high-fiving each other all over the island.

Associated Press

The Trump administration will provide $2.5 million in humanitarian aid for Venezuelan refugees who have fled into Colombian border towns fleeing poverty and oppression.

The extra money, provided through the U.S. Agency for International Development, will provide emergency food and health assistance as the Colombian government struggles to provide necessary medical and social services, said Mark Green, USAID administrator.

Associated Press

The White House on Monday continued tightening financial sanctions on Venezuela, issuing an order prohibiting U.S. citizens from making any transactions in the Petro, the socialist administration’s newly launched cryptocurrency.

The presidential order prohibits U.S. citizens from dealing in “any digital currency, digital coin, or digital token” issued by Venezuela after January 9, 2018.

Venezuela launched the Petro last month, and had touted the new cryptocurrency as a way to raise international financing amid Washington’s crackdown.

Pages