Foreign Minister Heiko Maas issued the following statement today (26 May) on the occasion of the virtual donor conference which addressed the regional impact of the Venezuelan refugee and migration crisis:
We are currently witnessing a twofold crisis in Latin America the like of which the continent has never seen before. On the one hand, COVID-19 is spreading at a dramatic pace in Latin America. At the same time, the region around Venezuela is experiencing the greatest refugee crisis in Latin American history, caused by the political and economic crisis into which Maduro has plunged Venezuela.
The German Government has decided to make available an additional 22 million euro in aid with the aim of supporting those countries in the region under the greatest pressure due to the high numbers of refugees. We are thus increasing our contribution this year towards tackling the Venezuela crisis to a total of 55 million euro. This is an important show of solidarity and friendship with Latin America. However, it is also clear that a political solution for the situation in Venezuela must be found urgently. This is the only way to ensure a durable improvement in the permanently deteriorating humanitarian situation in Venezuela.
In the coming days, I will reiterate to my counterparts in Latin America that Germany continues to stand side by side with the continent during the COVID-19 crisis. Next week, I plan to hold a video conference with Foreign Ministers from Latin America and the Caribbean within the framework of the Latin America and Caribbean Initiative. Especially now when many countries have to deal with the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, it is important to assure Latin American countries of our full support. For we can only overcome this crisis by working together.