No Venezuelan refugees in Guyana; army monitoring the situation- Chief-of-Staff
By Leroy Smith
Chief-of-Staff of the Guyana Defence Force Brigadier Mark Phillips during an invited comment on Wednesday evening said that there is no need for alarm for Guyanese, given the reported unstable economic situation in Venezuela.
According to the Chief-of- Staff, there is no need for the GDF to increase its manpower at the Guyana/Venezuela border, noting that ranks presently at the border are adequate enough to monitor and report the activities taking place daily.
“There is no need for additional troops at those locations, our ranks who are presently stationed there are fully capable of monitoring and reporting what is happening on the border and we are aware of the situation in Venezuela.”
Phillips said it is normal for civilians from Venezuela to be seen moving close to the border with Guyana in some areas and since the developments in their country, the GDF has not noticed any increase in those movements.
Asked specifically if there is any reported isolated cases of persons crossing the border as a result of the ongoing situation in Venezuela, the Chief-of- Staff responded in the negative.
Venezuela is presently in a state of uncertainty as the country faces a severe economic downward spiral which is now compounded with the Parliamentary Opposition rejecting a order by the country’s President to declare a state of emergency.
The Spanish speaking country is presently experiencing food shortages and constant power outages. The Government last month announced that workers are to work two days per week in an effort to conserve the already scarce resources.
Guyana which has had its fair share of aggression from Venezuela in the past is said to be the most vulnerable country, there could be a possible influx of refugees entering the country from the already porous borders.