Chilean Air Force to Retrieve Hundreds From Venezuela in Crisis

(Bloomberg) -- Foreign Relations Minister Roberto Ampuero confirmed Monday that an Air Force plane late this month will transport the first group of Chileans who have sought government help to return home from Venezuela.

More than 200 Chileans have indicated that they wish to return to Chile from Venezuela, where annual inflation is running at about 149,000 percent amid widespread food and medicine shortages. During Chile’s right-wing military dictatorship of Augusto Pinochet in the 1970s and 1980s, Venezuela gave sanctuary to thousands of exiled Chileans

"Given the grave difficulties that they are up against to live there, they want to return to our country and we will help them come back to Chile," the minister wrote in a press release Monday.

Concurrently, Chile’s government last week initiated a program aimed at helping Haitian migrants return home, with 176 people flown to Port-Au-Prince aboard the same aircraft that will be dispatched to Venezuela later in November.

Chilean President Sebastian Pinera’s administration is considering whether to broaden the measure assisting the Haitian returnees to other nationalities wishing to return to their home countries. Chile, a nation with a population of roughly 18 million, has roughly 1 million immigrants.

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