Communication Minister Jorge Rodriguez confirmed Tuesday that several planes will be arriving into Caracas in the next few days as part of the government’s program for migrants known as “Return to the Homeland Plan” including one from Ecuador Wednesday, one from Peru Saturday and another from Argentina on Monday.
Earlier in the day, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the activation of an airlift to guarantee the safe return of all migrants who have registered in the Return to the Homeland Plan Monday. The announcement came just hours after scores of Venezuelan migrants gathered in front of the country's embassy in Peru chanting “We want to leave!"
Last week the government of Venezuela facilitated the return of 89 citizens from Peru and 185 migrants from the state of Roraima, in Brazil. Venezuelan migrants have been targeted throughout the continent with xenophobic insults and even criminal actions.
“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.
Venezuela’s Vice President Delcy Rodriguez and Communications Minister Jorge Rodriguez stressed the role of social media in this campaign. “The world’s worst humanitarian crisis is the one generated by the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO),” Delcy argued lamenting the lack of coverage on that issue.
The Venezuelan president insisted that recent economic reforms are laying the groundwork for an economic recovery and has encouraged fellow Venezuelans to return home.
“Today we are in an advantageous position in the face of destabilizing factors. We are making progress in stabilizing currency exchange rates, in the definitive recovery of salary and pensions, and on equitable, agreed-upon prices…”
Venezuela’s Foreign Ministry has not announced the date for the airlift yet, but Venezuelan migrants are eager to return. “We want the plane today!,” one Venezuelan said while another lamented, “We are mistreated here.”