Children among 40 Venezuelan migrants intercepted at Moruca

A boat carrying 40 Venezuelan migrants, including women and children, was intercepted on Wednesday in the Moruca Subdivision of Region One (Barima-Waini) by Police ranks stationed at the Kumaka Waterfront in Moruca.
Guyana Times understands there were 12 females and four children among the 40 passengers. It is suspected that they were heading to the Waini area, where there are settlements for Venezuelan migrants.
This publication understands that the migrants were subsequently escorted to the Mabaruma Police Station, where they were expected to be screened and processed before being deported.
Recently, there has been an increase in the number of Venezuelan migrants coming into Guyana in search of betterment, after fleeing harsh living conditions in their homeland.

The boat with the Venezuelan migrants at Moruca on Wednesday

On November 2, a total of 19 Venezuelans in two boats – eight in one boat and 11 in the other, with only one female among them – were intercepted in the same area, Moruca. Most of the migrants were between the ages of 25 and 30 years, and none of them had any proper documentation.
It has been reported that the boats were captained by Guyanese who were hired to transport the Spanish-speaking persons to Charity on the Essequibo Coast in Region Two (Pomeroon-Supenaam).
Reports are that one of the boats had stopped at the waterfront at Moruca to buy rations (groceries). At the time, Police officers from the Moruca Station, which is located nearby, were at the waterfront, and they observed the vessel. The ranks intercepted the vessel, and upon realising that it was populated by Venezuelan nationals, contacted the Divisional Headquarters in Mabaruma. The officers were then informed that, based on intelligence received, there were two vessels transporting Venezuelans.
Based on that information, the Police officers teamed up with ranks of the Guyana Defence Force (GDF) and went out into the Moruca River, where they intercepted the second vessel that was in the water awaiting the return of the other boat.
The two Guyanese boat captains told investigators that they were hired to transport the Venezuelans to Charity. The two captains along with the 19 Venezuelans were transferred to the Mabaruma Police Station, where they were processed and interrogated.

The migrants that were intercepted on November 2

A few days prior, another set of Venezuelan migrants arrived in Essequibo in three buses, and made a stop in Anna Regina, where they disembarked and were reportedly processed by Police.
In recent weeks, Venezuelans have been entering Guyana’s territory in droves, fleeing harsh economic conditions in their homeland in search of betterment here. However, the increased influx of Venezuelans in Guyana is sparking widespread public concern here, especially as it relates to security, given the heightened tensions between Guyana and Venezuela over the ongoing border controversy.