Influx of Venezuelans forces Ecuador to declare emergency

August 9, 2018 GMT

BOGOTA, Colombia (AP) — Ecuador has declared a state of emergency in three of its provinces in an effort to cope with the growing influx of migrants from crisis-wracked Venezuela.

A spokesman for Ecuador’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs said Wednesday that the government will send more immigration officers and health workers to the country’s northern border with Colombia, where up to 4,000 Venezuelans are seeking entry into Ecuador each day.

The South American nation also said it is working with U.N. agencies to get tents and personal care kits for the Venezuelan migrants, who often arrive with little money and have no place to sleep.

At least 1 million people have left Venezuela since 2015 as its government fails to control hyperinflation, high crime rates and widespread food shortages.