Mass exodus from 'Mad Max violence' in Venezuela: Thousands flee across bridge to Colombia amid desperate hunger and soaring crime following economic crisis

by Keiran Southern, Daily Mail:

  • Thousands of desperate Venezuelans are trying to enter Colombia through the border crossing of Cucuta
  • They are fleeing hunger, inflation and the political crisis threatening to engulf the South American country
  • Colombia - along with neighbour Brazil - has sent extra soldiers to patrol their porous border with Venezuela
  • The crisis shows no sign of easing and Colombian lawmakers are beginning to tighten their border controls

The dire economic conditions have led to lawlessness in parts of Venezuela's capital Caracas, with truck drivers subjected to 'Mad Max' violence as looters target heavy goods vehicles carrying food.
 

These incredible images show the thousands of desperate Venezuelans trying to flee the crisis-hit country by pouring into neighbouring Colombia

These incredible images show the thousands of desperate Venezuelans trying to flee the crisis-hit country by pouring into neighbouring Colombia

Refugees trying to flee hunger, inflation and the political crisis threatening to engulf the country. Many people are struggling to feed their families

Refugees trying to flee hunger, inflation and the political crisis threatening to engulf the country. Many people are struggling to feed their families

In reaction to the crisis, Colombian lawmakers have begun to take steps to tighten their border controls. The new measures could make it more difficult for Venezuelan migrants to cross into the country illegally

In reaction to the crisis, Colombian lawmakers have begun to take steps to tighten their border controls. The new measures could make it more difficult for Venezuelan migrants to cross into the country illegally

According to Reuters, there were 162 lootings across Venezuela in January, including 42 robberies of trucks.

That is compared to just eight lootings, including one truck robbery, 12 months ago. 

Last month,  eight people were killed in lootings. 

Venezuela has one of the world's highest murder rates and the attacks are pushing up food and transport costs. 

The truckers are not allowed to carry guns so have resorted to forming convoys to protect themselves. They text each other warnings about potential trouble spots and keep moving as fast as possible. 

Massive numbers of Venezuelans have been driven from their homes by a dire financial crisis that has seen many struggling to feed themselves. 

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