Caracas, March 5, 2007 (venezuelanalysis.com)— The Chavez government announced late last week that it is increasing the aid it is sending Bolivia to $15.7 million and 75 tons of supplies to deal with the humanitarian crisis there, in the wake of massive flooding. This aid is in addition to logistical support in the form of emergency teams, helicopters, and transport planes.
The continuous rains in Bolivia have caused flooding that has left over 350,000 homeless and 35 dead. Economic damage is estimated to have reached $230 million, according to Bolivia’s National Chamber of Commerce. The torrential rains are the result of the so-called “El Niño” effect, which has been affecting the Amazon Department of Bolivia. Last week, Bolivia’s President Evo Morales declared Bolivia to be in a state of national disaster.
Venezuela sent its sixth aid shipment to Bolivia this week, thereby increasing its total aid package to $15.7 million in the past month. According to a recent article in the New York Times, Venezuela’s aid to Bolivia thus exceeds U.S. aid in helping to deal with this crisis.
In addition to the material aid of tents, drinking water, medicines, tools, and sandbags, Venezuela also sent disaster management specialists, doctors, search and rescue teams, and communications specialists. Of particular help are the three helicopters that can carry up to five tons of cargo and a Hercules C-130 transport plane.
Venezuela’s Minister of the Interior and of Justice, Pedro Carreño, is heading up the Venezuelan rescue delegation to Bolivia.