The United States and Mexico announced joint actions on Wednesday aimed at reducing the number of people arriving at their border due to the humanitarian and economic crisis in Venezuela.
"Effective immediately, Venezuelans who enter the United States between ports of entry, without authorization, will be returned to Mexico," the U.S. Department of Homeland Security said in a statement.
"Our comprehensive effort to reduce the irregular migration of Venezuelans also includes a new process to lawfully and safely bring up to 24,000 qualifying Venezuelans into the United States," the statement added.
The United Nations said Wednesday that almost three-quarters of the 6 million Venezuelan migrants currently in Latin America do not have adequate food, shelter, employment or medical care.
The U.N.’s International Organization for Migration said in a report that 4.37 million of the Venezuelans who fled to other countries in Latin America and the Caribbean often live on the streets or inadequate housing, and often go hungry.
Latin America and the Caribbean host 84% of the estimated total of about 7 million Venezuelans who emigrated in recent years.
The IOM and the U.N. refugee agency said that half of the Venezuelans in Latin America can’t afford three meals a day. Many are forced to turn to sex work to meet their basic needs, the report said. Other take out informal loans or turn to begging.
From the start of the Biden administration, critics have been highly critical of efforts to control a wave of illegal immigrants at the southern border with Mexico. President Joe Biden has been dogged by criticisms that his administration has done little to stem the tide.
Associated Press content was also used in this report.
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