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Offline asylumseeker

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Re: Venezuelans and T&T Thread
« Reply #150 on: December 04, 2020, 07:13:13 PM »
<a href="https://www.youtube.com/v/_FwyO99-XBI" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer" class="bbc_link bbc_flash_disabled new_win">https://www.youtube.com/v/_FwyO99-XBI</a>

<a href="https://www.youtube.com/v/XMe3-2dUeSY" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer" class="bbc_link bbc_flash_disabled new_win">https://www.youtube.com/v/XMe3-2dUeSY</a>
« Last Edit: December 04, 2020, 07:26:14 PM by asylumseeker »

Offline asylumseeker

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Re: Venezuelans and T&T Thread
« Reply #151 on: December 06, 2020, 11:52:32 AM »
Maduro just minutes ago showed off a watch he says he received from Maradona. He says he's wearing it today for good luck.  :)

Offline Flex

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Re: Venezuelans and T&T Thread
« Reply #152 on: December 17, 2020, 11:17:44 AM »
Venezuelan migrant believes wife, son among 23 drowned in attempt to reach Trinidad
LAUREL V WILLIAMS (T&T NEWSDAY).


Longing to see his family, a 51-year-old Venezuelan migrant was elated on December 6 when his wife and ten-year-old son boarded a boat from Guiria, Venezuela, to make the treacherous voyage to Trinidad.

He believes his wife, Christa Linda, 36, and their son, Christian Jose (last names withheld) were among the group of Venezuelans who died in a shipwreck off the coast of Guiria last week.

"I know Christa protected our son to the end! She was a good woman," the man said as he tried to hold back tears.

Venezuelan media reported that 21 of the 23 bodies recovered between Saturday evening and Wednesday afternoon have been identified. According to checks by Newsday, neither Christa Linda nor Christian Jose was among the 21 identified.

Newsday learned that relatives identified the victims through tattoos and DNA testing. Parts of some of the bodies are missing.

The search was ongoing up to Wednesday and the number of missing people remains unknown. Some media outlets estimated the final number of deaths at more than 40.

The migrant spoke to Newsday at a friend’s home in Couva on Wednesday. He recalled that he last spoke with his wife at about 8 pm on December 6.

After that he lost contact and, from what he heard, the boat arrived in Trinidad and Tobago waters the next day. He claims that, somehow, the passengers did not disembark and returned to Venezuela.

Unverified reports have since surfaced on social media suggesting that the T&T Coast Guard turned the group away, reports that government officials, including the Prime Minister and National Security Minister Stuart Young, have repeatedly denied.

On Wednesday, the migrant said he had planned for his wife and son to join him in Trinidad as he had made the island his home for the past year. He was looking forward to spending Christmas with them.

The man said he had registered with the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the UN refugee agency in Port of Spain.

"I do odd work here (in Trinidad) and get very little pay. I now have to help my family with funeral expenses. I have no money. Christa Linda’s mother is looking after the children. I have to provide for my daughters.

"A proper funeral can cost up to US$300. The country (Venezuela) is in a crisis."

Looking at photos on his cell, the bereaved man said his son loved baseball and played for a local team in Guiria. The boy was the youngest of the couple’s four children.

He said his wife worked as a teacher at Escuela Alejandro Villanueva but, owing to the crisis, she decided to come to Trinidad for a better life.

"My little boy was buried yesterday (Tuesday) at La Salina cemetery. He was my only son. I could not even attend his funeral in person. This is a tough tragedy. The wooden box was closed because his condition was terrible. I watched the funeral on my phone and the (internet) connection was not good."

The tearful man continued, "My wife was a good mother and wife. She was a professional woman. She was not getting a lot of money teaching. Her body will be buried next to his."

Newsday contacted the RC bishop of Carupano, Jaime José Villarroel Rodríguez, who was unable to confirm whether Christa Linda or Christian Jose was among the dead. He said, earlier in the day, he had officiated at the funerals of seven victims of the shipwreck.

"One was a pregnant woman. There were three children, and the rest were males. I will confirm the list for you tomorrow (Thursday)," the bishop said in Spanish by phone.

Since March 22, T&T’s borders have been officially closed as a precautionary measure to curb the spread of covid19. Venezuelans continue to make treacherous journeys by boat, mainly from  Delta Amacuro State (Tucupita/Pedernales) and Sucre State (Guiria).

Local authorities have repatriated hundreds of Venezuelans who entered T&T illegally since last year’s historic amnesty that allowed Venezuelan migrants to register, live, work and access government and health services in T&T.

The real measure of a man's character is what he would do if he knew he would never be found out.

Offline Deeks

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Re: Venezuelans and T&T Thread
« Reply #153 on: December 17, 2020, 08:18:57 PM »
So sad on both sides of the border.

Offline Flex

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Re: Venezuelans and T&T Thread
« Reply #154 on: December 19, 2020, 03:34:44 PM »
Human rights group: Let Caricom help Trinidad and Tobago with Venezuelan migrants
SEAN DOUGLAS (T&T NEWSDAY).


THE Caribbean Centre for Human Rights (CCHR), in a Facebook statement on Friday, urged T&T to ask its Caricom neighbours to help with the influx of Venezuelan migrants.

The CCHR said despite the economic crisis due to covid19, T&T still has a duty to protect human rights as set out in the T&T Constitution and laws, plus its obligations as a member of the Organisation of American States (OAS.)

“It is possible to secure our borders, protect our national security, mitigate the strain on our economy and preserve relationships with our international partners whilst honouring our obligations under international law," it pointed out. “Protecting vulnerable people fleeing a desperate humanitarian crisis does not have to be a zero-sum game.”

The centre said the Refuge Convention in its preamble says any state too burdened to provide asylum can seek international help.

“The Refugee Convention places expectations on its signatories to protect asylum seekers' and refugee rights. However it also offers avenues to a state that is struggling to honour its obligations under the convention and provide international protection.

“Based on this principle we urge the Government of T&T to seek the help of its Caricom brothers and sisters and the wider international community to manage the crisis.”

The centre said T&T sits next door to one of the worst human rights and humanitarian crises in modern history.

“Basic necessities are out of reach for many Venezuelans and the healthcare system is almost non-existent.

“The Venezuelan government continues to engage in systematic human rights atrocities against its own people as has been graphically detailed in the UN Human Rights Council report.”

The statement said Reuters had reported on the alleged victimisation of Venezuelan dissenters by "hate laws" aimed at stifling critics of the regime. The centre said after investigations, the International Criminal Court (ICC) has concluded a reasonable basis to prosecute Venezuelan government officials, including President Maduro, of crimes against humanity.

“T&T must do all that it can, taking into consideration the guidance and support that is at our disposal, to protect vulnerable persons seeking international protection, engage in efforts to eradicate the scourges of human trafficking and smuggling and save lives. All options have not been exhausted.

“And so we reiterate our call to the Government of T&T to consider exploring the option of a burden sharing agreement with other Caricom members and the wider international community.”

"To do so would create a proper response to the humanitarian crisis which seems too much for T&T to bear alone and let T&T show its commitment to honour its international obligations and protect human rights.

“We also call on Caricom leadership to recognise there needs to be a regional approach to this crisis and support the efforts of the T&T Government to prevent tragedies like the one that occurred last Sunday with the drownings of Venezuelan migrants.”

Deporting people back to the risky situation from which they fled is inhumane and breaches T&T’s obligations under international human rights law, the centre said.

“It is not the solution to deal with the humanitarian crisis. Criminalisation of the asylum process, where persons are deported based on irregular entry, places vulnerable persons at further risk.”

The protection of human rights must be the foundation of the Government's response in managing this crisis.

“And so as we commemorate International Migrants Day, we encourage the Government to reaffirm its commitment to allow safe, dignified and humane routes to seek protection.”

Contacted for comment Minister of Foreign and Caricom Affairs Dr Amery Browne said he could not comment without seeing the media release and referred Newsday to the Prime Minister's comments during a post-Cabinet media briefing on Thursday.

"These issues related to the migration matters, the OAS and it's treatment of the Venezuelan-Caricom-T&T situation will be much on the agenda during T&T's tenure as head of Caricom."

Newsday also contacted Prime Minister of St Vincent and the Grenadines and Caricom chairman Dr Ralph Gonsalves, but was told by his assistant that he was in a meeting at the time.

(With reporting by Shane Superville)

The real measure of a man's character is what he would do if he knew he would never be found out.

Offline Flex

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Re: Venezuelans and T&T Thread
« Reply #155 on: December 19, 2020, 07:05:55 PM »
'Trini businessmen trafficking Venezuelans for bodies, organs'
Anna Ramdass (T&T EXPRESS).


Trinidadian businessmen are involved in the illegal trade of Venezuelans to this country for the sale of their bodies through prostitution and also sale of their organs.

This statement was made by president of the Latin Association of Trinidad and Tobago, David Edghill.

“We have a next issue which is the exploitation, human trafficking, organ harvesting, narco and ammunitions trafficking involving the migrants supported by citizens and businessmen of Trinidad and Tobago,” Edghill said yesterday at a news conference at the Anchorage, Chaguaramas.

Edghill said Venezuelans are entering the country illegally and rings of illegal activities are happening without consequence.

“The illegal migrants coming into Trinidad is due to the non interest of authorities in our country to put under the law those who are bringing in through our borders migrants illegally,” he said.

“We have human trafficking going on in Trinidad and nobody has been locked up,” he added.

The Latin Association, he said, is willing to work with authorities to make things better.

“The quality of people coming into Trinidad and Tobago is certainly not qualified professional workers; we are having bandits, narcos, vagabonds running away from Venezuela just to come in here...it is scary, you don’t know who is coming in that boat,” he said.

Edghill said things must be put in order to treat with the criminals and assist the economic migrants who may be in need.

He said there must be a process to know what they are here for.

“Are they here to kill? Are they here to sell drugs or are they here to work?” he asked, adding that if they are here to work then welcome them and a way will be found to assist.

He said there are economic migrants who are fleeing Venezuela because of the crisis and lack of food.

He said action must be taken against the boat captains and owners who are charging innocent families to come into Trinidad for work, food and housing.

Edghill said the asylum seeking and resettling process is not being properly done.

He said the United Nations has to involve itself in relocating these people.

Also speaking at the news conference, the Association’s communications director, Eve George said there is an additional issue with nationals wanting to return to Trinidad.

She referred to a Trinidad and Tobago citizen who has been stranded in Grenada since earlier this year.

The woman, who preferred not to be named said she is facing hardship in Grenada and claims she is being exploited in order to survive on that island.

The real measure of a man's character is what he would do if he knew he would never be found out.

Offline Flex

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Re: Venezuelans and T&T Thread
« Reply #156 on: December 22, 2020, 05:14:00 PM »
Rowley wants to know who got US money for aid
By Renuka Singh (T&T Guardian)

Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley is asking where did the money go when it comes to aid from the US to assist with Venezuelan migrants.

That’s in response to a statement issued over the weekend by the US Embassy in Port-of-Spain in which it defended its sanctions against Venezuela, saying it was against the Nicolas Maduro regime and not the people.

In the statement, the US Embassy also touched on the fact that the US is the single largest donor of humanitarian assistance for Venezuela including some $11 million to T&T for Venezuelans living in this country.

That comment from the Embassy came just after Prime Minister Rowley said that this country got no assistance from anybody to assist with the migrant situation and Venezuelans living in the country.

When asked about his thoughts on the US Embassy’s statement Prime Minister Rowley said: “just bear in mind that somebody or bodies are getting and have received $77 million for this purpose.

“It is certainly not the Government. It explains a lot,” he said.

Meanwhile, Foreign Affairs Minister Dr Amery Browne said it is “not unusual” for the US missions to make statements about their policy and perspectives.

The US Embassy explained said that the Venezuela sanctions programme was designed to “limit the Maduro regime’s sources of revenue and promote accountability for those who stand in the way of restoring democracy in Venezuela, while also ensuring the flow of humanitarian goods and services to the Venezuelan people”.

“With the incoming (President-elect Joe) Biden/ (Vice-President elect Kamala) Harris administration, and with Prime Minister (Dr Keith) Rowley becoming chairman of Caricom in January, the region can look forward to an even stronger focus on diplomatic solutions to the difficult challenges that exist,” Browne said.

“We anticipate 2021 to be a year of peace and progress even as the world confronts unprecedented threats such as the current pandemic, that demand a multi-lateral approach to nations,” he said.

The US Embassy also clarified that there are no restrictions on the importation of food and medicine but that Maduro used Venezuela’s revenues to buy Russian weaponry instead.

The real measure of a man's character is what he would do if he knew he would never be found out.

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Re: Venezuelans and T&T Thread
« Reply #157 on: December 23, 2020, 02:38:26 PM »
Quote
“Acá en Güiria la cosa está fea y todo el mundo está buscando cómo irse. No tenemos ni gas para cocinar y todo es diez veces más caro acá. Como todos tenemos familia en Trinidad, ellos se iban a pasar las Navidades allá con una hermana. Mis dos sobrinos iban ahí y uno de ellos se iba a quedar, porque acá no hay nada que hacer”, relata a EL PAÍS la mujer, cuya hija también emigró hace dos años cuando se vio sin recursos para pagar una carrera universitaria. “¿Cómo van a acusar al señor Martínez si él mandó a toda su familia en ese bote?”, se pregunta López.

...

En este último naufragio, todos los que viajaban eran de Güiria, con familias establecidas en Trinidad y Tobago.

https://elpais.com/internacional/2020-12-23/los-32-ahogados-que-evidencian-el-drama-venezolano-en-la-guiria.html
« Last Edit: December 23, 2020, 02:42:57 PM by asylumseeker »

Offline Flex

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Re: Venezuelans and T&T Thread
« Reply #158 on: December 24, 2020, 03:49:35 AM »
The 32 drowned people of Güiria that show the Venezuelan drama
FLORANTONIA SINGER - Caracas (elpais.com)


The Venezuelan town buries more than thirty people on a journey to Trinidad and Tobago. There are still missing

Last Wednesday night, with the duel in tow, the inhabitants of Güiria, in the coastal Venezuelan state of Sucre, protested. The day before they had already held a vigil. The next day they called a march through the town, which has buried 32 people. They drowned in a new shipwreck in the waters between Sucre, in the northeast of the country, and Trinidad and Tobago, one of the migration corridors of the Caribbean whose traffic has intensified with the deterioration of the humanitarian crisis in Venezuela. Hunger has already driven 5.4 million people out of the country. Now, Güiria (40,000 inhabitants) cries and protests as he searches for his dead.

“Justice, justice!” Shouted a group of people in front of the headquarters of a military installation. It was a multiple demand. They asked for gasoline so that the fishermen could continue the search for the disappeared at sea, that what had happened be thoroughly investigated and more support from the Government to address the emergency. And they also demand from the Chavista leader, Nicolás Maduro, the freedom of Luis Martínez, the man who used to drive the ship that was shipwrecked, called My memory . He is the only one arrested in the case. Prosecutor Tarek William Saab accuses him of human trafficking and conspiracy.

Last Sunday the 6th, at 5:30 in the afternoon, it was not Luis Martínez —now under house arrest— who was at the helm of the ship. But eight of his relatives traveled there, including three children and a granddaughter, says Mary López, the fisherman's sister-in-law. “Here in Güiria things are ugly and everyone is looking for a way to leave. We don't even have gas to cook and everything is ten times more expensive here. Since we all have family in Trinidad, they were going to spend Christmas there with a sister. My two nephews used to go there and one of them was going to stay, because there is nothing to do here ”, tells EL PAÍS the woman, whose daughter also emigrated two years ago when she was unable to pay for a university degree. "How are they going to accuse Mr. Martínez if he sent his whole family in that boat?" Asks López.

There are several versions of what happened, a tragedy that has been reconstructed with imprecise data and information sailing from one coast to the other. And so far no survivors or witnesses have appeared who can clarify the doubts. The boat My memory left that Sunday,while Venezuela held a questioned parliamentary elections, with 19 people from the port of Güiria. On the way, these barges often pick up more passengers on the beaches before entering the open sea, that is, the precise number of passengers is not known. Some of the relatives who were waiting for them in Trinidad and Tobago say that the boat reached a beach on the Caribbean islands, where the migrants were first detained and then forced to return. According to this version, the shipwreck occurred during the voyage back to Venezuela.

In the last two years, the Trinidadian police have dealt with a heavy hand against Venezuelans. The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) revealed this week that in November alone Trinidad and Tobago deported at least 200 people. Migrants are often detained and then deported in the same boat in which they arrived. That happened, for example, on November 22 with a group in which there were 16 children. And that was the hope of the relatives of the deceased of Güiria. That is, that they appeared at some point. "Everyone swore they were in prison, until the dead appeared," says Xioglimar Mata, who had neighbors and friends on the boat.

Seven days after setting sail, three bodies were found on a beach near Güiria. Throughout that day they found 11 others. The shipwreck was already a certainty. Then, five more corpses washed ashore; then nine more, and on Thursday afternoon, another. Between Friday and Saturday, three more. A total of 32 bodies buried last week. Two have not been identified yet, as they await the results of DNA tests. At least a dozen people are still missing. Another boat called My Refuge left that same night on December 6 with another group. In Güiria, some point out that the passengers of both rafts were returned from Trinidad and Tobago in a single ship, despite the excess of passengers, and with little fuel, which caused it to wreck. Others believe that those who traveled in one of the boats and are listed as missing are being held on the islands. But the Trinidadian authorities have denied that any of those ships reached their lands.

No wake

The Venezuelan Prosecutor's Office affirms that the ship sank halfway, in the country's waters, and has also issued an arrest warrant for Mary López's two nephews, who are still missing. A commission of forensic doctors has been installed since Monday at the Güiria Coast Guard dock. In a tent they work on the analysis of the bodies. No one has had a wake. Every family has prayed for them at home.

Among the last corpses that the sea has brought, relatives say, some have appeared that are mutilated and others with a lower degree of decomposition than the first, which has unleashed speculation about the times of the shipwreck. Five days after the discovery of the first bodies, a police helicopter joined the search operation, which has been left in the hands of the fishermen themselves. “That night the sea was lonely because almost no one goes fishing because of the lack of gasoline. If a fisherman had been able to go out, he might have found them, ”adds López. Meanwhile, the family members only have a cry of pain, which is mixed with the protest.

"We feel without support"

Since 2019 there have been 114 missing persons from five boats that left the coasts of Sucre and Nueva Esparta, in the northeast of Venezuela, and Falcón, in the northwest, according to Johnny Romero, spokesman for an organization that groups together the families of the victims . In those cases, not as many bodies were recovered and the disappeared came from different areas of the country. His relatives denounce trafficking networks that allegedly operate in complicity with officials. In this last shipwreck, all those who traveled were from Güiria, with families established in Trinidad and Tobago. “We are very saddened by what happened and because we feel without support. What Trinidad does is harassment, ”says Anyelith Sanvicente, who is still waiting for a cousin of hers who is among the missing travelers to appear alive.


A man in a cemetery where a shipwreck victim was buried in Trinidad and Tobago. YURI CORTEZ / AFP

The real measure of a man's character is what he would do if he knew he would never be found out.

Offline Flex

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Re: Venezuelans and T&T Thread
« Reply #159 on: December 28, 2020, 02:13:46 PM »
Venezuelan drownings: 41 in a boat for eight
SEAN DOUGLAS (T&T NEWSDAY).


THIRTY ONE Venezuelans drowned off the coast of Guiria, Sucre after being crammed into a small boat designed for eight people, which capsized on December 6. The boat, My Memory, did not have proper safety equipment yet set out in rough seas with waves two to three metres high, amid bad weather including strong northwesterly tradewinds.

These were the findings of an investigation announced by Venezuelan Minister of Internal Relations (MRI), Admiral-in-Chief Carmen Meléndez, as reported in a Venezuelan economics magazine, Banca y Negocios (Banking and Business.) The online publication on Friday carried an article headlined – MRI determines causes of Güiria tragedy and rejects 'political manipulation' that affects relations with Trinidad.

The article revealed that on top of those who had drowned the boat had been carrying in total some 41 people. It lamented, "The causes of the maritime accident in which more than 30 Venezuelan migrants died en route to Trinidad and Tobago, were due to the overloading of the boat and that the passengers were sailing without the minimum security (safety) conditions, in the midst of strong waves."

The article said it provided the Venezuelan government's summary of the police and forensic investigations undertaken so as to explain a tragedy which had grieved not just the people of Guiria, but all Venezuela. It said the incident revealed in the extreme, the daily tragedy experienced by millions of Venezuelans, forced to leave the country by the economic and social crisis.

The article said the MRI head said the 41 travellers were going to "spend the Christmas holidays with their families and others were going to work in previously arranged positions." The story said the MRI did not state the travellers' conditions of immigration, in light of recent deportations.

"The main cause of the wreck was the overloading of the fiberglass rock-type vessel, which, having a capacity for eight people and a maximum weight of two tonnes, was carrying 41 people and weighing approximately four tonnes," Meléndez said.

"Additionally, they did not have life jackets or the necessary implements for navigation."

She said the trip was made in the middle of waves between two to three metres high.

"It is important to point out that the boat left an illegal place and at night, with the intention of evading the maritime controls established by the security agencies of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela," she added.

Meléndez said the Venezuelan government has since strengthened maritime controls so that this type of event does not repeat itself. Further, that government has promised comprehensive social assistance for local families, to support them in their pain over their irreparable loss in this regrettable accident. The Venezuelan government sympathised with the communities where the victims had lived, and pledged its solidarity to the people of Guiria.

The minister criticised an alleged political manipulation by extremist elements which, without considering the pain of the Venezuelan families which had lost loved ones, had used the image and memory of the deceased to affect the stability of the country and the relations between the governments of Venezuela and T&T.

T&T's prime minister Dr Rowley has accused Venezuelan and local opposition of politicising the drownings, saying his government did the best it could to help migrants legally through the 2019 registration exercise which allowed an estimated 16,000 to work. Dr Rowley also recently announced the legal migrants would have a six-month extension of the amnesty. He urged Venezuelans in their homeland to not risk their lives by trying to sail to Trinidad.

On Christmas Day, National Security Minister Stuart Young again warned that transporting migrants was illegal and qualified as human trafficking.

The real measure of a man's character is what he would do if he knew he would never be found out.

Offline asylumseeker

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Re: Venezuelans and T&T Thread
« Reply #160 on: December 29, 2020, 08:37:50 AM »
This scenario plays out on any given day, on any location on the planet, on which people's expectations of how they should live coincide with any floating vessel and a body of water on the other side of a river bank or sea shore that gives them HOPE.

And there's the hope that 40 human beings getting into a vessel designed for fewer than 10 human beings won't sink.

When Trinidad and Tobago totally absorbs the no-brainer decisions that accompany not living with hope, maybe the statements made in public office will be tweaked ... especially by those with ambitions to become Prime Minister.
« Last Edit: December 29, 2020, 08:39:47 AM by asylumseeker »

Offline Deeks

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Re: Venezuelans and T&T Thread
« Reply #161 on: December 29, 2020, 08:18:34 PM »
This scenario plays out on any given day, on any location on the planet, on which people's expectations of how they should live coincide with any floating vessel and a body of water on the other side of a river bank or sea shore that gives them HOPE.

And there's the hope that 40 human beings getting into a vessel designed for fewer than 10 human beings won't sink.

When Trinidad and Tobago totally absorbs the no-brainer decisions that accompany not living with hope, maybe the statements made in public office will be tweaked ... especially by those with ambitions to become Prime Minister.

So are You blaming Rowley and Young ?

Offline asylumseeker

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Re: Venezuelans and T&T Thread
« Reply #162 on: December 29, 2020, 08:53:52 PM »
This scenario plays out on any given day, on any location on the planet, on which people's expectations of how they should live coincide with any floating vessel and a body of water on the other side of a river bank or sea shore that gives them HOPE.

And there's the hope that 40 human beings getting into a vessel designed for fewer than 10 human beings won't sink.

When Trinidad and Tobago totally absorbs the no-brainer decisions that accompany not living with hope, maybe the statements made in public office will be tweaked ... especially by those with ambitions to become Prime Minister.

So are You blaming Rowley and Young ?

Not "blaming", but I think the junior partner's stewardship of the matter will attach to the legacy of the senior partner. On the face of it, one of the partners has a longer political future than the other. As such, the legacy will survive its scars, but the stewardship has a longer shelf life for scrutiny. Unless the approach preferred is to treat with the matter as the Hungarians do.


Offline Deeks

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Re: Venezuelans and T&T Thread
« Reply #163 on: December 30, 2020, 12:55:00 AM »
This scenario plays out on any given day, on any location on the planet, on which people's expectations of how they should live coincide with any floating vessel and a body of water on the other side of a river bank or sea shore that gives them HOPE.

And there's the hope that 40 human beings getting into a vessel designed for fewer than 10 human beings won't sink.

When Trinidad and Tobago totally absorbs the no-brainer decisions that accompany not living with hope, maybe the statements made in public office will be tweaked ... especially by those with ambitions to become Prime Minister.

So are You blaming Rowley and Young ?

Not "blaming", but I think the junior partner's stewardship of the matter will attach to the legacy of the senior partner. On the face of it, one of the partners has a longer political future than the other. As such, the legacy will survive its scars, but the stewardship has a longer shelf life for scrutiny. Unless the approach preferred is to treat with the matter as the Hungarians do.



Well If Young has aspiration to remain in politics and as you suggesting has ambition to be PM, he should think about resolving the present situation. Not thinking that if I do this or that, it will hurt my political future. What I would like to see done is that they secure the southern  western borders. I think we should help the Ven. but we definitely need to work on issue in TT, especially east of the dry to lady young road.

This is a powder keg that could explode again. I see local Trinis being ruthless. They complaining about all the Ven. coming in. But there is an entity who welcomes there prescence. Cheap labours. The locals who would hold out for a higher wages are in for a rude awaking.  And then the opportunity to use vulnerable women for the sex business.  There are Trinis who are knowingly breaking the laws to make money of the current situation. Taxi drivers rendez-vous in spots where illegals come and transport them to "safe" house. Not to forget the illegal guns and heavy drugs that are comin in with these activities.
« Last Edit: December 30, 2020, 12:57:29 AM by Deeks »

Offline ABTrini

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Re: Venezuelans and T&T Thread
« Reply #164 on: December 30, 2020, 12:57:58 PM »
This scenario plays out on any given day, on any location on the planet, on which people's expectations of how they should live coincide with any floating vessel and a body of water on the other side of a river bank or sea shore that gives them HOPE.

And there's the hope that 40 human beings getting into a vessel designed for fewer than 10 human beings won't sink.

When Trinidad and Tobago totally absorbs the no-brainer decisions that accompany not living with hope, maybe the statements made in public office will be tweaked ... especially by those with ambitions to become Prime Minister.

So are You blaming Rowley and Young ?

Not "blaming", but I think the junior partner's stewardship of the matter will attach to the legacy of the senior partner. On the face of it, one of the partners has a longer political future than the other. As such, the legacy will survive its scars, but the stewardship has a longer shelf life for scrutiny. Unless the approach preferred is to treat with the matter as the Hungarians do.



Well If Young has aspiration to remain in politics and as you suggesting has ambition to be PM, he should think about resolving the present situation. Not thinking that if I do this or that, it will hurt my political future. What I would like to see done is that they secure the southern  western borders. I think we should help the Ven. but we definitely need to work on issue in TT, especially east of the dry to lady young road.

This is a powder keg that could explode again. I see local Trinis being ruthless. They complaining about all the Ven. coming in. But there is an entity who welcomes there prescence. Cheap labours. The locals who would hold out for a higher wages are in for a rude awaking.  And then the opportunity to use vulnerable women for the sex business.  There are Trinis who are knowingly breaking the laws to make money of the current situation. Taxi drivers rendez-vous in spots where illegals come and transport them to "safe" house. Not to forget the illegal guns and heavy drugs that are comin in with these activities.

The real tragedy is that the international community has not taken a stronger stance aganice alleged  I'll treatment by the Venezuela government against its citizens. This mass exodus  of displaced and those fleeing from alleged horrid conditions is a human tragedy.

Unlike many Trinidad and Tobago residents who migrated to Venezuela to find jobs- or many island brethren who migrated to our shores for a better life.

One of the issues is our economy and infrastructure is not in place to handle the mass exodus arriving on our shores - especially during the COVID crisis.

Where is the UNrole in this? How can the UN mobilize NGO's to provide mobile camps, mobile health facilities and establish a refugeee facility to help process and stabilize the processing?

The government under these circumstances is not the be all and end all.

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Re: Venezuelans and T&T Thread
« Reply #165 on: December 30, 2020, 02:57:53 PM »
This scenario plays out on any given day, on any location on the planet, on which people's expectations of how they should live coincide with any floating vessel and a body of water on the other side of a river bank or sea shore that gives them HOPE.

And there's the hope that 40 human beings getting into a vessel designed for fewer than 10 human beings won't sink.

When Trinidad and Tobago totally absorbs the no-brainer decisions that accompany not living with hope, maybe the statements made in public office will be tweaked ... especially by those with ambitions to become Prime Minister.

So are You blaming Rowley and Young ?

Not "blaming", but I think the junior partner's stewardship of the matter will attach to the legacy of the senior partner. On the face of it, one of the partners has a longer political future than the other. As such, the legacy will survive its scars, but the stewardship has a longer shelf life for scrutiny. Unless the approach preferred is to treat with the matter as the Hungarians do.



Well If Young has aspiration to remain in politics and as you suggesting has ambition to be PM, he should think about resolving the present situation. Not thinking that if I do this or that, it will hurt my political future. What I would like to see done is that they secure the southern  western borders. I think we should help the Ven. but we definitely need to work on issue in TT, especially east of the dry to lady young road.

This is a powder keg that could explode again. I see local Trinis being ruthless. They complaining about all the Ven. coming in. But there is an entity who welcomes there prescence. Cheap labours. The locals who would hold out for a higher wages are in for a rude awaking.  And then the opportunity to use vulnerable women for the sex business.  There are Trinis who are knowingly breaking the laws to make money of the current situation. Taxi drivers rendez-vous in spots where illegals come and transport them to "safe" house. Not to forget the illegal guns and heavy drugs that are comin in with these activities.

The real tragedy is that the international community has not taken a stronger stance aganice alleged  I'll treatment by the Venezuela government against its citizens. This mass exodus  of displaced and those fleeing from alleged horrid conditions is a human tragedy.

Unlike many Trinidad and Tobago residents who migrated to Venezuela to find jobs- or many island brethren who migrated to our shores for a better life.

One of the issues is our economy and infrastructure is not in place to handle the mass exodus arriving on our shores - especially during the COVID crisis.

Where is the UNrole in this? How can the UN mobilize NGO's to provide mobile camps, mobile health facilities and establish a refugeee facility to help process and stabilize the processing?

The government under these circumstances is not the be all and end all.


I think the UN and the US are willing to assist or are assisting. But Rowley and Young do not want to be dictated by the conditions of getting relief money. They don't want that influx to be so huge that it become unmanageable,  and when is time for them to return, they don't want to. TT right now is between a rock and a hard place.

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Re: Venezuelans and T&T Thread
« Reply #166 on: January 01, 2021, 05:09:05 PM »
This scenario plays out on any given day, on any location on the planet, on which people's expectations of how they should live coincide with any floating vessel and a body of water on the other side of a river bank or sea shore that gives them HOPE.

And there's the hope that 40 human beings getting into a vessel designed for fewer than 10 human beings won't sink.

When Trinidad and Tobago totally absorbs the no-brainer decisions that accompany not living with hope, maybe the statements made in public office will be tweaked ... especially by those with ambitions to become Prime Minister.

So are You blaming Rowley and Young ?

Not "blaming", but I think the junior partner's stewardship of the matter will attach to the legacy of the senior partner. On the face of it, one of the partners has a longer political future than the other. As such, the legacy will survive its scars, but the stewardship has a longer shelf life for scrutiny. Unless the approach preferred is to treat with the matter as the Hungarians do.



Well If Young has aspiration to remain in politics and as you suggesting has ambition to be PM, he should think about resolving the present situation. Not thinking that if I do this or that, it will hurt my political future. What I would like to see done is that they secure the southern  western borders. I think we should help the Ven. but we definitely need to work on issue in TT, especially east of the dry to lady young road.

This is a powder keg that could explode again. I see local Trinis being ruthless. They complaining about all the Ven. coming in. But there is an entity who welcomes there prescence. Cheap labours. The locals who would hold out for a higher wages are in for a rude awaking.  And then the opportunity to use vulnerable women for the sex business.  There are Trinis who are knowingly breaking the laws to make money of the current situation. Taxi drivers rendez-vous in spots where illegals come and transport them to "safe" house. Not to forget the illegal guns and heavy drugs that are comin in with these activities.


The real tragedy is that the international community has not taken a stronger stance aganice alleged  I'll treatment by the Venezuela government against its citizens. This mass exodus  of displaced and those fleeing from alleged horrid conditions is a human tragedy.

Unlike many Trinidad and Tobago residents who migrated to Venezuela to find jobs- or many island brethren who migrated to our shores for a better life.

One of the issues is our economy and infrastructure is not in place to handle the mass exodus arriving on our shores - especially during the COVID crisis.

Where is the UNrole in this? How can the UN mobilize NGO's to provide mobile camps, mobile health facilities and establish a refugeee facility to help process and stabilize the processing?

The government under these circumstances is not the be all and end all.


I think the UN and the US are willing to assist or are assisting. But Rowley and Young do not want to be dictated by the conditions of getting relief money. They don't want that influx to be so huge that it become unmanageable,  and when is time for them to return, they don't want to. TT right now is between a rock and a hard place.

It is erroneous to make assertions without facts - to identify two individuals as barriers or hindering in this crisis is wanton scapegoating . What is occurring  at such a volume and in masses is beyond our  country's capacity  to cope -
This issue is an international issues and it begs the question where is the UN in enacting their mission insituations like this.

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Re: Venezuelans and T&T Thread
« Reply #167 on: January 13, 2021, 01:59:12 AM »
PM sides with Guyana in Venezuela dispute
By Gail Alexander (T&T Guardian).


Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley has returned to work and has immediately addressed regional issues, including defending Guyana against Venezuela on a land issue, as chairman of Caricom.

Yesterday was his first day of duties following cardiac problems and angioplasty over the weekend.

Caricom under his chairmanship took issue with Venezuela’s position against Guyana on a maritime border issue.

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro’s socialist administration has set alarm bells ringing by rejecting a recent jurisdictional ruling by the International Court of Justice (ICJ) concerning his country’s territorial claims over oil-rich neighbour Guyana.

Maduro issued a new decree last week claiming sovereignty over areas claimed by Guyana, while Venezuela’s national assembly established a special committee for the defence of disputed territory.

The claim covers more than half of Guyana’s land mass and much of Guyana’s Atlantic maritime territory, including most of the prolific ExxonMobil-operated Stabroek block, where a raft of huge oil discoveries have been unearthed in recent years.

Guyana’s modern argument for ICJ jurisdiction was based on the 1966 Geneva Agreement — signed by the UK, Venezuela and colonial British Guiana — which stipulates that the parties will agree to find a practical, peaceful and satisfactory solution to the dispute.

Guyana has argued, successfully, that the Geneva Agreement also establishes jurisdiction for an ICJ ruling, and diplomats now expect that ruling to come within a timeframe of two to four years.

Anxious to stave off unrest in a country where living standards have plummeted, Maduro has seized on the jurisdictional ruling in an attempt to galvanise popular support.

“It is ours! It belongs to the Venezuelans and we are going to retake it in peace and with national unity,” Maduro said of the Essequibo territories.

Guyana’s President Irfaan Ali called Maduro’s actions and words “deeply disturbing” and argued that any attempt to “unilaterally” fix boundaries between the two countries would be a legal nullity in the eyes of international law.

The Caricom statement said the community was deeply disappointed and concerned “at the decree and subsequent statements by Venezuela with respect to that country’s border controversy with Guyana, including intimations of the creation of a strategic area of national development called ‘Territory for the Development of the Atlantic Façade’”.

It said Caricom was “in full support of the judicial process underway at the International Court of Justice (ICJ) which is intended to bring a peaceful and definitive end to the long-standing controversy between the two countries.

“CARICOM reiterates in the strongest possible terms, its firm and unswerving support for the maintenance and preservation of the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Guyana. CARICOM firmly repudiates any acts of aggression by Venezuela against Guyana.”

Browne said it was a “strong, very timely statement of solidarity which is fully consistent with the established Caricom position on how the border dispute should be properly treated and resolved at the ICJ.”

“As chair of this special emergency meeting, the Prime Minister led the drafting and finalisation of the statement as one of his first official functions as current Caricom chairman,” Browne added.

Canada has also expressed concern over Venezuela’s claim.

In a statement, Ottawa said “Venezuela’s recent claim that it has sovereignty over the area adjacent to Guyana’s Essequibo coast is concerning. The decision is in the hands of the International Court of Justice and this judicial process must be respected.”

The United States on Sunday also weighed in on the matter. It declared support for the International Court of Justice’s (ICJ) ruling that it has jurisdiction to hear Guyana’s case for a juridical settlement of the long-running border controversy with Venezuela.

Dealing with Venezuela is among several issues that remain on Caricom’s agenda.

Trinidad and Tobago did not vote at a recent meeting of the Organisation of American States (OAS) which condemned the recent Venezuelan elections.

Recently Jamaica’s Opposition took its government to task for participating in the OAS vote. That Opposition called on Prime Minister Andrew Holness to explain the breaking of respected traditions at the OAS Council.

It was deemed a reversal of Jamaica’s longstanding foreign policy commitments which broke Jamaica’s image regionally and internationally.

Jamaica’s Opposition stated handling of the circumstances between T&T and Venezuela was disturbing and Jamaica, which chaired the OAS Council, could have handled the situation more responsibly.

Their Opposition said Jamaica and two other states, “irresponsibly and in an unprecedented” way allowed Venezuelan Opposition supporters to attack T&T’s Government and other Caricom states.

Jamaica’s Opposition said their Government had forfeited Jamaica’s role as a fair honest broker and seemed intent on isolating regional sister nations which sought alternatives to US President Donald Trump’s agenda and Venezuela’s crisis.

The real measure of a man's character is what he would do if he knew he would never be found out.

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Re: Venezuelans and T&T Thread
« Reply #168 on: February 22, 2021, 02:26:01 AM »
Venezuelan police officer builds better life for family in Trinidad
KALIFA SARAH CLYNE (T&T NEWSDAY).


When Venezuelan migrant Darilis Martinez, 27, left her country she was working as a police officer in Tucupita. She had also recently completed a university degree in systems engineering at la Universidad Nacional Experimental de las Fuerzas Armadas in Tucupita.

In 2019, she paid a boat captain US$300 to transport her and her then six-year-old daughter to Trinidad, a desperate attempt to search for a life that seemed better than the hunger, unemployment and illness that surrounded her in Tucupita.

The decision was not an easy one to make. She was a police officer. She knew she was breaking the law.

She also knew the monthly food quota she was allowed was not enough for her aged parents as well as her husband, daughter and herself. Her father had cardiac issues and could not work and though healthy, she couldn't work either. There were no jobs.

In her village, people talked about escaping to Trinidad. Some, who had already left, sent food and money back to relatives. In Martinez' mind, Venezuela presented an impossible situation and Trinidad showed possibility.

She discussed it with her husband and they decided that they would move to Trinidad in order to make a better life and better care for their elderly relatives.

The trip to Trinidad from Venezuela takes approximately three hours by boat but avoiding detection by authorities adds hours to the trip and Martinez left Venezuela at 2 pm and arrived in Trinidad at 4 am. She was nervous, after hearing stories about the rough waters and people becoming ill. For Martinez, the trip was calm as she clung to her daughter with one hand and a small bag, containing two pairs of shoes and a shirt for each of them, with the other.

She does not know where she landed in Trinidad, but the majority of Venezuelans who enter Trinidad and Tobago illegally, do so through Cedros and other parts of the southwestern peninsula, jumping from boats and running toward empty shorelines while captains make a hasty retreat.

Her husband, Xavier Garcia, made the trip 20 days later.

When the Government announced that they would register Venezuelans and allow them to stay in the country for a period of time, Martinez and her family went on the first day at 3 am, they spent the night in Port of Spain, eating food given to them by local volunteers, and finished the process at 5 pm the next day.

A few days after entering Trinidad, Martinez took her daughter with her to a construction site in Cunupia, where a friend told her she could find work. While her daughter played on her mobile phone, Martinez moved cement blocks around a construction yard.

"I couldn't do it anymore after three days. At the end of the third day my boss said see you tomorrow and I said no. It was just too painful," Martinez said.

Her boss was kind and referred her to a friend who needed painters. There, she got paid $160 per day and her new job provided lunch.

After that job ended, she got a job cleaning a boat in Port of Spain before getting another job cleaning a bar in Arima. She would go to work at the bar at 8 pm and leave at 4 am, then she would wake up to go to work at 8 am, selling laundry detergent in a carpark near a supermarket.

Soon she started cleaning houses on weekends so they could have enough money to pay rent and still send food for their relatives in Venezuela.

Her husband got a job at a food truck, working with a friend he knew from Venezuela.

Martinez worked job after job until she, her husband and his friend Eduardo Rivas decided to open their own business. They decided on a food truck near where they lived in Arima.

They saved for months until they could pay someone to construct the food truck. When it was finished, they called it Davier's Grill, after her son who was born in Trinidad six months ago.

When they opened on November 30, it represented a new beginning for them.

About a week later, two men, one with a gun, the other with a knife robbed them an undisclosed sum of cash.

While the ordeal was scary for them, Martinez said they are still committed to running the business.

"I have to help my parents in Venezuela. I work and I send money and food for them. I am their only child and they depend on me completely," Martinez said.

Once per week, a friend in Venezuela goes to her parents house so they can video chat. Martinez said while she is happy for the opportunities in Trinidad, she thinks about the day she can be with her parents again.

"I am happy in Trinidad but I miss my family."


Darilis Martinez stands in front of the food truck Davier's Grill in Arima. Photo by Kalifa Sarah Clyne


Darilis Martinez and her son Davier. The food truck Davier's Grill is named after her son who was born six months ago. Photo by Kalifa Sarah Clyne


Eduardo Rivas, who runs Davier's Grill with his friends Darilis Martinez and Xavier Garcia, prepares a hot dog for a customer. -

The real measure of a man's character is what he would do if he knew he would never be found out.

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Re: Venezuelans and T&T Thread
« Reply #169 on: February 22, 2021, 06:46:38 AM »
Yuh just knew that article would include an attack on their business.

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Re: Venezuelans and T&T Thread
« Reply #170 on: February 22, 2021, 05:59:59 PM »
Quote
In 2019, she paid a boat captain US$300 to transport her and her then six-year-old daughter to Trinidad, a desperate attempt to search for a life that seemed better than the hunger, unemployment and illness that surrounded her in Tucupita.

Bargain pricing.

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Re: Venezuelans and T&T Thread
« Reply #171 on: February 26, 2021, 01:31:21 AM »
Venezuelans stranded: Govt denies sanctioned repatriation aircraft
By Akash Samaroo (T&T Guardian).


Scores of Venezuelan nationals were stranded at the Piarco International Airport last night after a repatriation flight that was due to arrive in T&T from Venezuela was blocked from coming.

The aircraft belonged to Conviasa, a Venezuelan State airline that has been sanctioned by the United States.

The 97 Venezuelan nationals were forced to sleep at the airport as a result.

“What is the problem? Ninety-seven people are here, people with cancer, elderly people, children. They sold all their things and now people have nowhere to go,” said one of the few English-speaking members of the group at the airport.

The group said that for months they had been liaising with this country’s National Security Ministry to return home.

“(Minister of National Security) Stuart (Young) say yes, everything is in order. Why use today, the day the flight was supposed to go to Venezuela to say we can’t go?” another English-speaking Venezuelan national shouted.

A statement by the Ministry of National Security said that the Government of Venezuela had made the request for the repatriation flight and that preliminary approval was granted by the National Security Ministry as the flight was seen as a humanitarian effort.

The statement said when the details were provided by the Venezuelan Government it was discovered that the airline, Consorcio Venezolano de Industrias Aeronáuticas y Servicios Aéreos (Conviasa), was under a US sanction.

“Unfortunately in those circumstances, the Ministry of National Security could not grant approval for the aircraft to come to Trinidad and Tobago,” the release said.

The ministry said the request from Venezuela came in the “past week.”

However, the Venezuelan nationals claim the ministry knew that it was a Conviasa flight all along.

“The Government always said it was a Conviasa flight. All flights to Venezuela is Conviasa.”

The National Security Ministry said it has reached out to the US Embassy in Port-of-Spain “to seek guidance”.

The ministry said it will work with the Ministry of Foreign and Caricom Affairs “with respect to the possibility of a future repatriation exercise by the Venezuelan Government”.

One Venezuelan national has claimed that many in the group gave up their apartments and jobs in anticipation of returning home and that some even sold their mobile phones to pay for their PCR COVID-19 tests.

“I am now in the street. I am pregnant with two kids I gave up my job and now I don’t know what to do, what is being put in place for us?”

US sanction against Conviasa

On February 7, 2020, the US Department of Treasury issued the following statement regarding the sanction against Venezuela’s State airline.

“The US Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) today identified the Venezuelan state-owned airline Consorcio Venezolano de Industrias Aeronauticas y Servicios Aereos, S.A. (Conviasa) as subject to sanctions as part of the Government of Venezuela, pursuant to Executive Order (E.O.) 13884.

Today’s action also identifies the Conviasa fleet of aircraft as blocked property of the Government of Venezuela pursuant to E.O. 13884. Conviasa and its fleet have been blocked since the issuance of E.O. 13884 of August 5, 2019, and today they have been added to the OFAC’s Specially Designated Nationals List to ensure strengthened compliance with US sanctions.

“The illegitimate Maduro regime relies on the Venezuelan state-owned airline Conviasa to shuttle corrupt regime officials around the world to fuel support for its anti-democratic efforts,” said Secretary Steven T. Mnuchin.

“The Trump Administration will not allow Maduro and his proxies to continue stealing from the Venezuelan people and abusing state-owned assets to advance their own corrupt and destabilising activities.”

Conviasa operates as a commercial airline based in Caracas, Venezuela, flying both domestic routes as well as providing service to select international locations.

This action does not prevent the ability of the Venezuelan people to travel, as they can continue to travel on various other carriers not subject to OFAC sanctions. Rather, this action is intended to curtail the Maduro regime’s misuse of the airline.

For instance, the Maduro regime has commandeered Conviasa’s aircraft to promote its own political agenda, including shuttling regime officials to countries such as North Korea, Cuba, and Iran.”

RELATED NEWS

US Embassy: We're willing to assist humanitarian effort to get Venezuelans home
SEAN DOUGLAS (T&T NEWSDAY).


After a request from the National Security Ministry for guidance on how to proceed after dozens of Venezuelans waiting for a flight home were stranded at Piarco Airport, the United States Embassy has said it is willing to assist in the repatriation.

The flight was refused permission to land on Thursday because the plane had sanctioned by the US.

In a statement, the ministry said, “Within the past week the Venezuelan Government made a request of the Government of Trinidad and Tobago to facilitate their provision of a repatriation flight from Trinidad to Venezuela. This request was made via the normal diplomatic channels to the Ministry of Foreign and Caricom Affairs.”

The Ministry of National Security granted preliminary approval for this repatriation as a humanitarian effort by the Government of Venezuela. “All arrangements were made by Venezuela.”

But when details were provided of the aircraft that the Venezuelan Government was proposing to use to repatriate about 100 Venezuelans, it was discovered that the aircraft was amongst those sanctioned by the US. So, the ministry said, “Unfortunately in those circumstances, the Ministry of National Security could not grant approval for the aircraft to come to T&T.

It said it had contacted  the US Embassy in Port of Spain for guidance "and will work with the Ministry of Foreign and Caricom Affairs, with respect to the possibility of a future repatriation exercise by the Venezuelan Government.”

Minister of Foreign Affairs Dr Amery Browne took time out from attending the Caricom leaders’ intersessional meeting to reply by text message to Newsday’s queries, ahead of the Ministry of National Security statement.

Browne wrote, “The flight was deemed not to be possible as planned by the Venezuelan authorities, as the aircraft they were seeking to use is one that is on a sanctioned list.”

Asked for details of the Venezuelans' welfare as they awaited an approved plane, Browne replied, “The Embassy of Venezuela in Port of Spain is fully informed and engaged in resolving the situation and addressing the immediate needs of their citizens.

“It is anticipated that suitable arrangements would be put in place in the near future to transport the prospective passengers via an aircraft that is not sanctioned.”

Newsday could not contact Minister of National Security Stuart Young, but he forwarded his ministry’s statement.

The US Embassy in a texted response to questions sent by Newsday, said it was aware of the ministry's request concerning the use of a sanctioned aircraft for a repatriation flight.

It said, "US sanctions targeting (Venezuelan President Nicolas) Maduro, his allies, and those who support them are designed to permit the continued provision of assistance to the Venezuelan people. The US maintains broad exemptions and authorisations that allow for the provision of humanitarian assistance, including related to repatriation.

"US Embassy, Port of Spain, will work closely with the ministry to provide any necessary information to facilitate the safe and lawful repatriation of Venezuelans."

Renewed calls for Young to go over Venezuelan plane faux pas
YVONNE WEBB (T&T NEWSDAY).


Barataria/ San Juan MP Saddam Hosein has said the incompetence of National Security Minister Stuart Young, in having a US-sanctioned plane involved in repatriating Venezuelans, is a national embarrassment and he must go.

On the United National Congress (UNC) Pavement Report on Thursday night, Hosein asked how Young could have missed that sensitive and important detail in what he called Young’s arrangements to have approximately 100 Venezuelans repatriated earlier in the day.

He read from a National Security release which said the Venezuelan Government had asked the Trinidad and Tobago Government to facilitate its repatriation flight from Trinidad to Venezuela some time before.

In the release Young said the request was made via the normal diplomatic channels to the Ministry of Foreign and Caricom Affairs and his ministry granted preliminary approval, as it was seen as a humanitarian effort by the Venezuelan Government.

All the arrangements were made by Venezuela but the National Security Ministry said when the details of the proposed flight were provided, it was discovered that the airline was amongst those sanctioned by the US.

The aircraft was therefore denied permission to land at Piarco. The TT Government has since contacted the US Embassy in Port of Spain for guidance.

“Is the blind leading the blind?” Hosein asked. “How embarrassing! The incompetence is glaring. Stuart Young, you must go.”

The UNC recently moved a no-confidence motion against Young in Parliament, which failed.

Hosein also predicted “a collapse and crisis at the Immigration Department at the airport, all because of one man called Stuart Young.”

He referred to nine immigration officers at the Piarco Airport testing positive for covid19, which has resulted in shifts being reduced from five to two.

He again cast blame on Young for the shortage of proper personal protective equipment (PPE) for these officers.

He referred to an internal memo which said the airport authority was yet to supply a schedule for cleaning for the regular supply of PPE. It said the sanitising was done and misting machines used approximately 30 minutes after the change of the 6 am and 2 pm shifts, and as of February 24, there were no surgical masks.

“There were 25 gowns in the last three months, three packs of surgical masks and no protective screens – for 90 members of staff.

“They have to go to private entities to solicit sanitisers, and only oversized gloves were provided for them.

“Imagine, they (the Government)withdrew $6.3 billion from the Heritage and Stabilisation Fund (HSF) and not one surgical mask for the Immigration.

“This man has put the lives of immigration officers at risk,” Hosein said.


Venezuelan nationals wait at the check-in area at the Piarco International Airport after the repatriation flight was stopped yesterday.


Some of the Venezuelan nationals and members of the media at the Piarco International Airport.


Venezuelan nationals who were to return home yesterday, listen to information about their flight which was cancelled.

ALL PHOTOS - BY ABRAHAM DIAZ

« Last Edit: February 26, 2021, 08:01:05 PM by Flex »
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Re: Venezuelans and T&T Thread
« Reply #172 on: February 26, 2021, 09:01:34 AM »
Foreseeable problem.

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Re: Venezuelans and T&T Thread
« Reply #173 on: February 26, 2021, 08:02:31 PM »
Venezuelans repatriated on second attempt as aircraft allowed to land in Trinidad
GREVIC ALVARADO (T&T NEWSDAY).


Finally 96 Venezuelans who were refugees in T&T, returned to their country on Friday on a repatriation flight.

At 7.30 pm yesterday, the plane of the Venezuelan state airline Conviasa took off from the Piarco International Airport after getting permission to land in Trinidad.

Ultimately, 82 adults and 14 children returned to Venezuela, the vast majority selected by officials from the Venezuelan Embassy in T&T according to their degree of vulnerability.

The repatriation flight was organised by the Venezuelan government and should have left on Thursday afternoon to fly to Caracas, but the T&T government denied the Conviasa plane permission to land.

A release from the Ministry of National Security on Thursday confirmed that permission for the Venezuelan aircraft to land in T&T had been denied as the airline had been sanctioned by the United States.

The release said, "The Ministry of National Security has reached out to the US Embassy in Port of Spain to seek guidance and will work with the Ministry of Foreign and Caricom Affairs, with respect to the possibility of a future repatriation exercise by the Venezuelan Government."

United States Embassy, in its own release later Thursday, said it was willing to assist in the repatriation.

"US Embassy, Port of Spain, will work closely with the ministry to provide any necessary information to facilitate the safe and lawful repatriation of Venezuelans."

On Friday morning, the Venezuelan Embassy confirmed that the flight had received the relevant authorisation from T&T authorities.

Officials from the embassy, in turn, called each of the approved passengers to inform them of the development.

Some of the passengers had already returned to the airport with their family and friends to awaiting news of the rescheduling of the trip.

Twenty others, including a pregnant woman and three children registered for the trip, had slept at the airport on Thursday night hoping the flight would be rescheduled.

The group was given empanadas for dinner by staff from the Venezuelan Embassy.

"We slept in the chairs in the counters area and the airport security guards were attentive to us," said Carlos Benitez, one of the travellers.

At around 3 pm on Friday, workers from the Swissport company – hired by the Venezuelan authorities to receive luggage and board passengers – began checking the 96 people registered for the flight.

An hour later, the Conviasa plane from Venezuela landed in Piarco.

Eduardo Ávila and his wife Celia de Ávila, two elderly Venezuelans who were here with their children and grandchildren, told Newsday that they still had a long way to go after arriving in Caracas, but that they were happy.

Celia said, "We are calm. We already saw the plane land and, although we know it will be several hours to get to our house, we already know that we are going back."

Officials from the Venezuelan embassy here said the cost of the flight was being covered by its government and therefore free to passengers. Airport departure taxes were also waived. Passengers were, however, required to pay for a covid19 PCR test before qualifying for the flight.

"This is the first repatriation flight from T&T, a door opens for future air or sea travel. We hope to continue counting on the support of the authorities because there are still many Venezuelans who want to return home."

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Re: Venezuelans and T&T Thread
« Reply #174 on: February 27, 2021, 05:09:44 PM »
PM urges US to lift sanctions on Venezuela
CLINT CHAN TACK (T&T NEWSDAY).


THE Prime Minister on Friday appealed to United States President Joe Biden's administration to use its influence to help achieve a negotiated solution to the crisis in Venezuela and lift sanctions imposed on that country by his predecessor Donald Trump.

Dr Rowley, who is also Caricom chairman, made this appeal to the US during a virtual interview with the Atlantic Council.

The council is a US-based, non-partisan organisation founded in 1961 to provide a forum for international political, business and intellectual leaders.

Rowley said he would like to see an "early review of the US' scorched earth policy in this area, since the United Nations assessment confirmed what we always knew and that is, the ineffective harsh policies, unilateral sanctions, are contributing immensely to widespread, additional indiscriminate human suffering in this Caribbean nation."

Venezuela, he continued, needs help "which is not beyond the US leadership." Rowley recalled that since 2019, Mexico, Norway and Caricom have been advocating dialogue between opposing political factions in Venezuela to solve "seemingly intractable political problem".

He said, "I will ask the (Biden) administration not to be over-influenced by the dogmas of the recent past and the hawks of the recent flyings but to look at this with a clean table top." The US, he said, "once again has the stature and the influence, to bring the Venezuelan parties to a table, with the support of Caricom and other nations, read the riot act to everybody and agree, as they all agreed, that Venezuelans must solve Venezuela's problems, not only in the interest of Venezuela but the interest of all of us who are co-dependents."

He added, "We are convinced that it is possible that some solutions can be had, so that sanctions can be removed."

Rowley described Venezuela's relationship with Caricom and the US as "so fundamental to our comfort and prosperity."

Recalling steps taken by TT to sign the Dragon gas deal with Venezuela in 2018, Rowley said his government was able "to get Venezuela to agree to do something that not been done before, which is to export its gas.

"Everything was in place to have TT tap, for the international market and for its own development, gas supplies close to our border. But the sanctions on Venezuela have brought a halt to all of this."

He also said Caricom was very disappointed with the recent announcement of "the unconvincing designation of Cuba as a terrorist sponsoring state.

"We believe that this is one place that climate change would be welcome. We could all benefit from a significant thaw in the relationship between Cuba and the US."

Rowley said "continued close collaboration and partnership on regional and international issues" was the best way to advance US-Caricom relations for everyone's benefit

In a statement issued earlier in the day, Caricom said it was seeking close collaboration with the US on issues such as combating illegal firearms in the region; blacklisting and correspondent banking; energy and trade.

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Re: Venezuelans and T&T Thread
« Reply #175 on: March 03, 2021, 02:33:29 AM »
Repatriated Venezuelans lose all T&T rights
RYAN HAMILTON-DAVIS (T&T NEWSDAY).


ANY Venezuelan who is repatriated, even if they were registered with Government, will have to apply for a visa and get exemptions and permissions if they wish to return to this country, National Security Minister Stuart Young said on Tuesday.

Young at a press conference reminded reporters that after Venezuelans were registered in June 2018, government approved a policy that would require any Venezuelan entering T&T to have a VISA. “That is the applicable law,” he said.

He also highlighted the decision on March 22 last year, to close T&T’s borders due to the pandemic. “I put that contextual background to let it be known at the outset that this re-registration exercise is not an opportunity for any people who illegally entered into T&T or people who don’t have visas to be here in T&T, to come forth and register now,” Young said. The re-registration process would allow Venezuelan migrants to work and live in T&T legally for another six months.

Asked whether there was any thought toward extending the time in which they were allowed to stay in the country legally or making these registered Venezuelans permanent, Young said only in special circumstances would the registration process lead to a permanent status.

“There may be independent circumstances, where some Venezuelans go on to get married and put in an application for permanent residency but that too is a process.

And it’s not just cause you applied you are given the permanent residency.

“Anyone who came in under this registration scheme, the time won’t allow you to fall into any categories which would trigger that (permanent residence).

“At this time this is the government’s policy we are doing it (registering Venezuelans) in a six month cycle. Maybe later we will take a different position but at this stage we continue to maintain a six month cycle. It is what we are going with.”

Young said several Venezuelans have opted to leave the country. Last Friday, 96 Venezuelans – 82 adults and 14 children – left for their homeland on a flight organised by the Venezuelan government. Some other Venezuelans had their cards cancelled, either because they committed a crime and would have to be deported or because they requested to return home.

While he could not give an exact figure of how many people were either repatriated or deported, he said the number was in the hundreds.

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Re: Venezuelans and T&T Thread
« Reply #177 on: July 13, 2021, 12:10:37 PM »
124 Venezuelans deported on Sunday
GREVIC ALVARADO (T&T NEWSDAY).


THE Trinidad and Tobago and Venezuelan authorities deported 124 Venezuelans to their country on Sunday.

Vice Admiral Euclides Brito, commander of the 61 Integral Defence Zone in Delta Amacuro, Venezuela (Zodi), announced this on Monday through a Venezuelan radio station.

Brito was speaking with the governor of Delta Amacuro Liseta Hernández when he said the group of 124 Venezuelans is travelling on a Venezuelan navy ship.

"We are waiting for our compatriots who come back to Venezuela through the Plan Vuelta a la Patria (Return to the Homeland Plan). We await them with open arms," ​​he said.

The Twitter account of the Guiria Military Hospital said doctors travelled from there in the AB Margarita71 boat to deal with the deportees, whom they tested for covid19. They will all be sent into home quarantine when they arrive in Venezuela.

Of the 124 deportees, 44 were detained at the Immigration Detention Centre (IDC), Aripo, while another group was at the Heliport in Chaguaramas. They were joined by humanitarian cases.

This is the first of two trips that will take Venezuelans home this week from TT. The next voyage will be a repatriation trip this weekend.

Officials from the Venezuelan embassy in Port of Spain told Newsday last week they were completing the details of the repatriation of 700 Venezuelans on a ferry.

These 700 decided to go home voluntarily after being unemployed here owing to restrictions against covid19, or because of illness.

Although the date and time are not confirmed, several of the travellers selected by the embassy told Newsday the trip will be this Saturday, July 17. A ferry is scheduled to leave Port of Spain and arrive at a port in the state of Anzoátegui, Venezuela.

These two shipments of Venezuelan nationals this week will add more than 1,000 people who have returned to their country in 2021.

Two of the trips have been deportations, taking home 172 people in April and 124 this Sunday.

In February, 95 Venezuelans left on a Piarco-Caracas flight.

The real measure of a man's character is what he would do if he knew he would never be found out.