Sunday 20 September, 2020

Gov't denies accepting international aid for Venezuelans

The Government is denying that it has received funding to assist Venezuelans fleeing to Trinidad from the economic crisis plaguing the country.

The Ministry of National Security issued a late-night statement on Sunday, rubbishing the claims which it said has spread across social media.

"The Government of Trinidad and Tobago has not accepted any financial assistance from any international body with respect to the Venezuelan situation. It is being reported on social media that the Government of Trinidad and Tobago has accepted money from USAID for the Venezuelan situation; this is not so and suggestions otherwise are mischievous," the release said.

The United States Embassy issued a statement on March 15, noting that the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) has made available US$1.6 million to the people of Trinidad and Tobago to assist Venezuelans fleeing their homeland.

However, the statement said the programs using the US$1.6 million will begin by September and will focus on strengthening community resilience and capacity to address the recent influx of Venezuelan refugees and migrants to Trinidad and Tobago. 

The money was not intended to be delivered directly to persons in need.

Representatives from the Government, USAID, the US Embassy, and the Trinidadian and Venezuelan civil society met in Port of Spain on March 13-15, to determine how the US could assist in managing the crisis in Venezuela. 

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