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Jolie praises Colombia's response to Venezuelan refugee crisis

IANS  |  Bogota 

Hollywood and UNHCR envoy, has highlighted Colombia's humanitarian response to help Venezuelans who have fled the economic and political crisis affecting their country.

Speaking at a press conference at in the La Guajira region on the Colombia-border on Saturday, urged the international community to tackle the worsening problem, reports mews.

"I am her to show my support to the people of Colombia, who are responding to the Venezuelan crisis with remarkable generosity," said, during her first visit to

The number of Venezuelans leaving their country has reached four million, the (UNHCR) and the announced on Friday.

More than 1.3 million are in Colombia, where the government is providing them assistance in education and health care.

"Over 400,000 Colombians, who had been displaced to Venezuela, have now been forced to return by the catastrophic situation there.

"They are alongside 1.3 million Venezuelan refugees who have sought protection in Colombia," Jolie said.

Jolie, who was accompanied by the UNHCR Deputy High Commissioner, and UNHCR in Colombia, Jozef Mekx, said: "It is extraordinary that a country facing so many huge challenges of its own, has shown such humanity and is making these live-saving efforts. I want to acknowledge the bravery, strength and resilience of the Colombian people.

"has still kept its borders open and is doing everything that it can to absorb these unprecedented numbers of desperate people."

The actress, who met Colombian earlier on Saturday in Cartagena, warned that more than 20,000 children born in to Venezuelan parents are at risk of becoming stateless.

"The and I spoke of the risk of statelessness for more than 20,000 Venezuelan children and his commitment to always helping children," she added.

Duque said that he had a conversation with Jolie on "the need to tackle the nationalization of thousands of Venezuelan children in our country who do not have a defined immigration status today."

"To do it is a humanitarian act, to provide them with opportunities and benefits that they deserve to come out of this tragedy," he added.



(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Sun, June 09 2019. 09:28 IST