Under the Venezuelan government’s Return to the Homeland Plan, over 90 more of its citizens returned from Peru after experiencing ill-treatment and xenophobia in the neighboring country.
Among those who came back to Venezuela were 15 pregnant women and 24 children. Returnee, Isbelis Herrera, told teleSUR as she landed in Caracas from Peru, “Thanks to President Maduro we can come back.”
She explained: “The situation was very hard (in Peru). It’s not how they make it out to be. … There is no country like Venezuela. Imagine—a president that helps you come back. Where do you see this? In what country do you see this? No matter your political leaning, what other country does this? None. Venezuela is one of a kind.”
So far, 190 citizens have returned from Peru, 92 from Ecuador, 1,404 from Brazil, five from the Dominican Republic, two from Chile, one from Colombia and one from Panama. In total 1,695 Venezuelans have returned to their nation from various South American countries since the Return to the Homeland Plan was initiated a few weeks ago.
President Maduro introduced the program on August 4 announcing: “I have ordered the activation of an airlift based on the Return to the Homeland Plan to bring back all the Venezuelans who have registered and who want to come back to their beloved land.
“There is a campaign of hatred, persecution, and xenophobic contempt against the people of Venezuela. A global campaign headed by spokespeople for the United States making declarations against the people of Venezuela accusing us of migrating, and creating a scandal,” Maduro said.
More flights are expected to repatriate to Venezuelans from Colombia and Ecuador in the following days.
The deputy minister for international communications, William Castillo, noted that the registration process for Venezuelans wishing to leave Colombia, Peru, Ecuador, and Argentina will continue.
"A very important part of this migration is a kind of the disappointment because where they come they have been victims of xenophobia, discrimination, labor exploitation, sexual exploitation, trafficking in human beings, subhuman conditions in miserable shelters," Castillo said during an interview with state media Venezolana de Televisión (VTV).
The Homeward Plan envisages that returning Venezuelans can be reinserted into the life they left with the help of various national social programs.
The United Nations has also pledged to assist Venezuela in 'return home' efforts.