Carlos Valero

Carlos Valero, a member of Venezuela’s National Assembly yesterday reported that 112 Venezuelans have disappeared in the Caribbean Sea while attempting to flee Venezuela in boats that left for Trinidad and Tobago or nearby islands.

He gave this figure while commenting on the recent deportation of 16 children from T&T. He described that situation as “unacceptable” and said the National Assembly will take up that case with international bodies such as the Organization of American States (OAS), Caricom and the Inter-American Court of Human Rights.

Valero said 55 other children had been deported from T&T in the same way but the difference this time is that there is international pressure in the case.

In the disappearance of more than 100 Venezuelans in the Caribbean Sea, he said: “There is a human trafficking network in the area and they may be in their hands.”

Valero, who has dedicated himself to working for Venezuelan migrants, said while T&T does not have a refugee policy “that does not mean that they can violate human rights.”

Another member of the National Assembly, Karin Salanova called on the T&T authorities to explain the circumstances in which they deported the 29 Venezuelans last weekend.

“The engine of one of the pirogues was not working, the sea conditions were rough and they were not given food,” she said.

“We ask that children’s rights be respected and that they be guaranteed the right to be with their parents.”

Jhonny Romero, spokesman for relatives of missing Venezuelan migrants, appealed to members of the opposition-controlled National Assembly to continue working and fighting for the more than 100 Venezuelans who disappeared at sea.

He said he was not surprised by what happened in T&T with the 16 minors because in his opinion “it is a government without humanity.”