Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro said today that at least 7,000 of his compatriots have returned to their country after asking them to return and again denied that there is a migrant crisis despite the UN estimates that 2.3 million people have left Venezuela fleeing of the crisis.
"A few thousand left and I barely made a call: 'Return to the homeland,' they are all coming back," Maduro said in an act broadcast on a mandatory radio and television station.
According to the president, "desperate" Venezuelans have returned from Peru, Colombia, Brazil and Ecuador, burdened by alleged acts of xenophobia and the appalling working conditions they found in these countries.
He also said that he will reinforce with more resources the plan to promote the return of Venezuelans to his country, a program that was activated last month and that subsidizes airline or bus tickets for those who wish to return.
"I am going to guarantee your bus or plane to return to the country and definitively dismantle the psychological warfare campaigns that, through the channels of migratory lies, seek intervention from Venezuela," he added.
According to Maduro, it is "impossible" that more than 2 million Venezuelans have left their country in recent years because the rates of schooling and consumption have increased.
"We have set up a psychological war and have made the world and many Venezuelans believe that 2 million were really gone, please, my God, it is impossible," he said.
According to the UN, 2.3 million Venezuelans have been forced to leave their country in the face of the socio-political and economic crisis that their country is going through, which is expressed in scarcity and hyperinflation.
Of them, close to one million have settled in Colombia, a country that 35,000 Venezuelans cross every day, many in search of essential goods and others to emigrate permanently.
The Venezuelan government has rejected these data, and said at the end of last September that it will request economic compensation for the millions of immigrants from several countries of the region residing in its territory.