Colombia's Santos will toughen controls on Venezuelan border, provide aid

Reuters News
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Posted: Feb 08, 2018 1:29 PM

CUCUTA, Colombia (Reuters) - Colombia strengthened migratory controls and offered humanitarian aid to help hundreds of thousands of Venezuelans fleeing economic devastation at home, President Juan Manuel Santos said on Thursday, even as his country shoulders millions of dollars in monthly costs to support the migrants.

The number of Venezuelans living in Colombia increased 62 percent in the last half of 2017 to more than 550,000, the migration authority has said. Many arrive in utter poverty, forced to sleep in doorways and under bridges while they try to scrape together enough money to feed their children.

(Reporting by Helen Murphy)