“680 Venezuelan citizens who were detained for immigration reasons in different centers in the United States have been released to date. This was reported by the Director of Consular Affairs of the Venezuelan Embassy, Brian Fincheltub, who stated that “this represents 62% of the Venezuelans who remained in transition centers.”
As it will be recalled, at the beginning of April, Ambassador Carlos Vecchio reported that 567 citizens had been released so far. “Since then there have been more than 100 releases and this is the result of the joint work between the relatives of the detained citizens, probono lawyers, NGOs, journalists and the Venezuelan Embassy,” Fincheltub said.
The director of consular affairs stressed that the Venezuelan Embassy has stood firm in its position that there should be no deportations to Venezuela, citing the situation of deep crisis and persecution that has been imposed by Nicolás Maduro’s dictatorship, and which has also deepened during the COVID -19 pandemic. Furthermore, the office of Ambassador Carlos Vecchio continues to work with US authorities on a mechanism of migratory protection that, like the TPS, allows Venezuelans to live and work in peace, while conquering freedom.
According to the figures handled directly by the Embassy’s directorate of consular affairs, there are still 420 Venezuelan citizens detained for immigration matters in ICE centers. “Most of them are in the state of Arizona. Before, the largest concentration was in the state of Louisiana and thanks to the efforts of the Embassy’s consular team, the rate of confinement in the centers of that jurisdiction has been reduced,” Fincheltub said.
He explained that “each case is different and has a particularity that must be addressed, always respecting the procedures. This does not mean that all citizens will not be released, but that they will be released as each case is reviewed by the immigration authorities. Some cases may take longer than others, but we continue to take all the necessary steps so that these Venezuelan brothers can continue their processes in freedom.
He reported that despite the fact that the pandemic does not allow physical visits to the detainees, “we have been making daily calls with them to verify their health status and condition, in addition to offering them the relevant assistance. We have also requested humanitarian measures for those who remain in detention. The pandemic has not stopped our actions.”
The Venezuelan Embassy reiterates its call to all probono lawyers who wish to offer their support and professionalism in favor of the release of Venezuelan citizens to contact the consular team at [email protected]
Information on Venezuelan citizens detained in the United States for immigration reasons should be notified by email to: [email protected]
Finally, Fincheltub insisted that “all this drama that Venezuelans in Venezuela and abroad are living is the responsibility of Nicolas Maduro. No one should be forced to leave their country, nor suffer a complex humanitarian emergency within their homeland. For this reason, we continue working to solve the underlying problem that is the demise of the dictatorship and the re-establishment of a free and democratic Venezuela. To this end, Acting President Juan Guaidó has proposed the urgent formation of a National Emergency Government, an approach supported by the international community”.