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Brazil Urged To Legalise Venezuelan Migrants At Border


RIO DE JANEIRO, Feb 4 (Bernama) -- The Brazilian Public Ministry on Friday demanded the government legalise thousands of Venezuelan migrants who fled a political and economic crisis in their home country, reports China's Xinhua news agency.

In a statement, the ministry denounced the fact that police in the northern state of Roraima, which borders Venezuela, have been overwhelmed by an avalanche of refugee petitions from Venezuelan migrants.

The statement said Brazil does not have any alternative methods to deal with this "complex migratory flow," so "the only option" is to grant refugee status to all the migrants.

Since Venezuela is currently suspended from the South American trade bloc Mercosur, Venezuelan citizens cannot enter Brazil under the agreement of that bloc.

"Under this circumstance, Venezuelan citizens cannot use this legal instrument to obtain residence documents and work permits in Brazil," said the statement, which was signed by Brazil's National Immigration Council,Catholic charity Caritas, and various NGOs.

The statement also said that not legalising the immigrants would be "counterproductive" for Brazil and it would not be humanitarian to deny "these people the possibility of seeking temporary survival...when they face a situation of extreme precariousness and hunger in their country."

Finally, the signatories of the statement offered to create a working group "as soon as possible" in order to facilitate the legalization of the Venezuelan migrants.

-- BERNAMA