Colombia, Peru seek additional aid to assist with influx of Venezuelan migrants

A Venezuelan migrant child carries a broom and a bucket while he walks in a camp run by the UN refugee agency UNHCR in Maicao, Colombia May 7, 2019. Picture taken May 7, 2019. REUTERS/Luisa Gonzalez

Colombia and Peru on Monday called on the international community to commit more aid to help them cope with an influx of around 2 million Venezuelans who have migrated to the two countries in recent years.

The plea, part of a joint statement signed by the presidents, did not specify how much international aid they had received so far or how much more was needed.

READ MORE: Oil and migration: why the U.S. is heavily involved in Venezuela’s crisis

Colombia and Peru have so far received the majority of the estimated over 3 million Venezuelan migrants who have fled their homeland since 2015 as the country’s economy has imploded.

“Colombia and Peru are facing the worst migratory crisis that Latin America has seen in its recent history,” Colombian President Ivan Duque told journalists during a visit to Lima, alongside Peruvian President Martin Vizcarra.

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WATCH: UN refugee camp offers temporary respite for Venezuelan migrants

Click to play video: 'UN refugee camp offers temporary respite for Venezuelan migrants' UN refugee camp offers temporary respite for Venezuelan migrants
UN refugee camp offers temporary respite for Venezuelan migrants – May 10, 2019

Duque warned that migration would likely continue to increase if Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro remained in power.

Vizcarra said the international community had not yet grasped the magnitude of the challenge facing the two developing countries, and said he would bring up the issue in global forums until more aid was provided.

Last month, Peru started to deport groups of Venezuelans with criminal backgrounds.

The United Nations has said Venezuelan migrants deserve protection as refugees and has urged states not to deport them

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