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Experts predict more Venezuelans to seek asylum in US

Local News
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Experts say Venezuelans to seek asylum in US amidst of crisis  (Source CBS News)

The crisis in Venezuela has US leaders asking for a peaceful transition to democracy.

As Maduro’s regime continues, experts say it is likely we will see more Venezuelans on our Southern border.

Over the weekend Venezuelans were met with rubber bullets and tear gas trying to reach US humanitarian aid.

“These men worked to block aid for people in need and suppress peaceful protest, while their tyrant danced in Caracas,” said Vice President Mike Pence in Colombia as he met with Guaido to discuss new Venezuelan Sanctions.

Venezuelans are fleeing to countries nearby like Chile, Peru and Colombia but that pattern could be changing.

“Where are you coming from?” asked a Border Patrol Agent.

“Venezuela”, responded an immigrant recently apprehended.

Border patrol agents in the Rio Grande Valley sector have identified Venezuelan families trying to seek asylum.

“These family groups said they left the day before the border was closed, they said Colombia is simply not letting cross into the border. They crossed into Colombia visitors and then after that and traveled up to the United States,” said Melissa Lucio, Border Patrol Agent in Charge for McAllen Station.

CBS4 spoke to one family who says they are fleeing for their lives, “if you don’t agree with the situation, the political situation at this time there is a chance of you being killed” translated the border patrol agent for the immigrant.

“The people fleeing Venezuela are fleeing for their lives,” said Efren Olivares, Attorney for Texas Civil Rights.

Efren says, the trend of Venezuelans crossing into the US is rare due to the distance but not impossible.

“I think we should stay vigilant and remember that the United States has been welcoming fleeing from oppression looking for democracy and safety really,”  Olivares said.

As Maduro continues to reign over Venezuela, the US will continue to support those who want democracy.

CBS 4 has reached out to border patrol regarding the number of Venezuelans apprehended at the border, we have not heard back.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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