'This Is an Act of Christianity': Protestors Call for Maduro to Allow Life-Saving Aid into Venezuela
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CUCUTA, Colombia – The humanitarian crisis in Venezuela is growing worse as the country's weeks-long political showdown drags on. And as the tragedy sinks to new levels of misery, nobody is quite sure who is in charge of the country.
The US and dozens of other nations are calling for Nicolas Maduro to step down – 50 nations now recognize Juan Guaidó as the interim president. But Maduro not only refuses to budge, he's also blocking international relief aid from entering the country.
Sunday, Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) flew to neighboring Colombia to put pressure on the Venezuela strongman who has been running the country into the ground since 2013.
Juan Guaido and Nicolas Maduro vie for power in Venezuela (AP Photos)
But with more than three million Venezuelans having fled their homeland and many of those left inside literally starving, here in the border town of Cucuta, Colombia, tensions are coming to a head.
Chants of "Libertad! Libertad!" echo through the streets.
American military aircraft have been arriving here over the past week delivering tons of humanitarian aid intended to ease the suffering of these Venezuelans. But troops loyal to Nicolas Maduro have so far blocked the shipments from entering their country. Maduro has called the shipments unnecessary, and a political stunt, but desperate Venezuelans beg to differ.
"We need help right now," a Venezuelan man told CBN News. "You know our people out there are starving, dying, just waiting for what? They can't waste any more time. Please help, we need you, we need you, you know, we need your help!"
Over the weekend, a congressional delegation from the US arrived at the border to see the situation, accompanied by Colombian Ambassador to the United States, Francisco Santos Calderon.
Calderon said, "Even though the dictator is saying that this is a provocation, the only answer that we have for him is that this is an act of love. This is an act of Christianity. This is an act that shows the moral compass of those who cannot stand by seeing the suffering of millions and millions of Venezuelans that come across this bridge dying of hunger, dying because of lack of medicine."
US Sen. Marco Rubio joined in saying, "What is happening here today, what is happening in Venezuela is a manmade crisis of epic proportions, not caused by a natural disaster but a manmade one. A criminal regime that is willing to kill and starve and kill its own people before it gives up power."
Meanwhile, many of those attending Sunday worship services across this city are clinging to hope for change in Venezuela, and praying for peace in the process.
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