Humanitarian Crisis In Venezuela: 280,000 Malnourished Children Could Die In Upcoming Months

Food deficit in Venezuela
A man scavenges for food next to girls in the streets of Caracas on February 21, 2017. Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro is resisting opposition efforts to hold a vote on removing him from office. The opposition blames him for an economic crisis that has caused food shortages. Photo; Getty Images

Susana Rafalli, a member of the Cáritas organization in Venezuela, revealed to the Italian newspaper Avverine that in the coming months a total of 280,000 malnourished children could be dying by hunger. "The level of child malnutrition has exceeded the threshold of the humanitarian emergency," Rafalli explained. "It is disastrous that 33% of the children have delays in their growth, this physical and mental damage is irreversible."

According to Cáritas - a confederation of more than 160 members working in the bases in almost every country in the world, when a crisis occurs, only in Caracas 5 to 6 children per week die due to malnutrition. "Humanitarian aid is necessary to save lives, there was nothing said a year ago, because people were not dying," Rafalli said. She also added that 9 out of 10 households with children could not cover the cost of their daily meals.

The crisis in Venezuela has spiraled into a humanitarian crisis, where food shortages, skyrocketing inflation and a plummeting currency are just a few issues that caused the country to become the world's worst economy.

The U.S. Senate expressed concern about the internal situation in Venezuela and urged members of the OAS to take steps to address the crisis in the South American nation. But what has really caused the food shortage in Venezuela? The agricultural measures during Chávez administration caused food imports to rise dramatically. With Venezuela's reliance on imports and its lack of having dollars to pay for such imports, shortages ensued.

The country's current poverty is due oil, the same thing that made it rich. Venezuela has the world's largest oil reserves, being the U.S. its biggest customer. President Hugo Chavez, who died in 2013, controlled oil profits. Chavez used all the money in education, health care and employment, but all that spending left Venezuela in recession.

Protests against current Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro, have brought thousands to the streets demanding elections, but has also left dozens of people dead, in addition to hundreds of people injured and about 800 detained, according to an official toll. The opposition of the new goverment is brutally repressed with bullets, water tanks, pepper spray and tear gas by the Venezuelan riot police, while Maduro plans to rewrite the Constitution of the country.

 

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Shirley Gomez has been exposed to many aspects of the art world. Besides being a Fashion Journalist, she studied Fashion Styling and Fashion Styling for Men at the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City, Interior Design at UNIBE and Fashion Design at ITSMJ Fashion School in the Dominican Republic. She worked as a Fashion Journalist, Fashion Stylist and Social Media Manager at one of the most recognized magazines in the Dominican Republic, Oh! Magazine, as an occasional Entertainment Journalist, of the prestigious newspaper “Listín Diario”, as well as a fashion collaborator of a radio show aired in 100.9 FM SuperQ. When Shirley is not writing you can find her listening Demi Lovato or Beyonce's songs, decorating her apartment or watching Family Feud.

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