Puerto Rico sends humanitarian aid to Venezuela

The humanitarian aid requested by the interim president of Venezuela, Juan Guaidó, has already begun arriving in the country despite Nicolás Maduro’s government’s blockade attempts, said Luis Rivera Marín, Puerto Rico’s secretary of state.

“We have seen with great regret how they intend to block the land accesses of Colombia, in Cúcuta, to Venezuela,” said the Puerto Rican official in an interview with Fernando del Rincon in CNN’s Conclusions in Spanish. “And we, with the planning that we have had, the help of the coordinators appointed by President Guaidó, we have been able to identify some windows and this cargo arrived,” he added.

The government of Nicolás Maduro has blocked a bridge connecting Venezuela with Colombia in the midst of a campaign to collect humanitarian aid requested by the Venezuelan opposition, according to Colombian officials and as evidenced by images of the bridge.

The Colombian border city of Cúcuta is one of the collection points of international humanitarian aid requested by Guaidó. Maduro has rejected international aid.

The construction of the Tienditas bridge was completed in 2016 in a joint Venezuela-Colombia project that cost about 32 million dollars, according to the Union of South American Nations (UNASUR), but the bridge has never been opened for use due to poor relations between the government of Maduro and the government of Colombia.

Rivera Marín said in Conclusions that in their collection centers have enough humanitarian aid to make it arrive “by other means”.

“So it has arrived, it is reaching whoever has to reach it,” he said.

If something is still in doubt, it is what the army’s performance will be when an attempt is made to introduce the cargo.

“We trust that even the military will not be able to stop this,” Rivera Marín said. “Because you have to presume that this soldier, somehow, has a brother, has a cousin, has a nephew, has a child who needs these basic necessities.”

Rivera Marín also recognized the value of the pilots of the mission and sent an emotional message to the citizens of Venezuela.

“That’s how you respond to an emergency like this, these are brave men and women.” He exhorted the Venezuelans to resist, “to let them know, that we are the international community, ready to help them and that we will not leave them alone”.

On his part, Juan Guaidó referred to humanitarian aid on Thursday.

“We’re going to get the #Humanitarian Help to enter because it’s about saving lives!” He wrote on Twitter.

The collection phase of the humanitarian aid will last several days, while the next steps and the ways of distribution will be announced in the coming weeks.

With information from CNNEnEspañol.

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