As coronavirus explodes in Venezuela, Maduro’s government blames the country’s returning refugees
Many are stealing in from Colombia, entering the country through illegal crossings, without testing for the novel coronavirus. Maduro says they’re fueling a dangerous spike in cases in this uniquely vulnerable nation.
“Those who cross [back home] illegally, you are killing your families,” Maduro said in a televised speech last week. “The Colombian virus has sneaked everywhere, and is killing good people.”
Venezuela’s U.S.-backed opposition says Maduro’s government is making a bad situation worse by penning new arrivals in ill-equipped quarantine centers, where opposition figures say the virus is spreading.
More than 5 million people have fled starvation, poverty and government repression in Venezuela in recent years, with most settling elsewhere in Latin America, where the poorest have scraped out precarious lives as domestic workers, laborers and street vendors.
But as the coronavirus has torn through the region, and countries from Mexico to Argentina have locked down, many of these refugees, left jobless and hungry on the streets of Quito, Lima and Bogotá, are heading home. In …continued .
[Source: Washington Post]