Today, the United States is pre-positioning humanitarian relief supplies in Curaçao, a constituent country of the Kingdom of The Netherlands, to help people affected by the political and economic crisis in Venezuela.
The collapse of health care in Venezuela has left nearly all hospitals in the country in desperate need of basic medicines and supplies, and prompted outbreaks of diseases that were thought to be under control. Today’s commercial delivery to Curaçao contains four emergency health kits manufactured in The Netherlands, which contain medicines and medical supplies-including bandages, gauze, examination gloves, thermometers, and syringes-designed to fill immediate medical gaps for people affected by emergencies. The kits can cover the priority health needs of 40,000 people for three months.
The pre-positioning of these relief supplies would not have been possible without the support of the Governments of Curaçao and The Netherlands. These efforts not only demonstrate the strong partnership between our nations, but also underscore our shared commitment to helping the people of Venezuela. In response to the request made by Interim Venezuelan President Juan Guaidó, the United States has pre-positioned hundreds of metric tons of critical relief supplies in Colombia and Brazil-procured both locally and internationally-to help tens of thousands of Venezuelans. This includes food, medical supplies, hygiene kits, nutrition products, and units for the purification and storage units of water.
To be effective, however, the Maduro regime must allow this critical aid to enter Venezuela. The U.S. Government is coordinating with governments in the region, and our regional humanitarian partners, on the logistics of providing emergency relief to Venezuelans safely and efficiently.
The health kits sent today are not the first-and will not be the last-assistance provided by the American people to help Venezuelans in crisis. Since Fiscal Year 2017, the United States has provided more than $195 million-including more than $152 million in humanitarian assistance and approximately $43 million in development and economic assistance-to support the generous efforts of countries in the region that are hosting the nearly 3.4 million people who have fled the chaos and starvation in Venezuela.
In addition, on January 24, 2019, Secretary of State Pompeo announced that the United States is ready to provide more than $20 million in additional funding to support humanitarian assistance activities inside Venezuela. The pre-positioned aid in Curaçao is part of this initial humanitarian assistance for the people inside of Venezuela.