Venezuelans cross into Colombia by canoe, as border closure enters second week
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Venezuelans cross into Colombia by canoe, as border closure enters second week

Inhabitants of Venezuela’s border with Colombia are being forced to cross between the countries by canoe as a crackdown on migrants stretches into its second week.

The going rate for a short river journey has been less than a dollar at Venezuela’s widely-used black market exchange rate. Many of the roughly 50 people waiting to cross Saturday morning were Venezuelans seeking to fill medical prescriptions.

The border between Boca del Grita and Puerto Santander in Colombia was among four more crossings closed Saturday by President Nicolas Maduro in the name of cleaning up smuggling and paramilitary activity on Venezuela’s western edge.

Officials estimate that 8,000 Colombians have fled or been deported from Venezuela since the crackdown began.

The Red Cross has established emergency shelters on Colombia’s side of the border.

Associated Press

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