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Tue Apr 21, 2020, 02:20 PM

Venezuelan Migrants Leave Ecuador as Coronavirus Hits Economy


GUAYAQUIL, Ecuador (Reuters) - Venezuelan migrants in Ecuador are setting out on perilous journeys to return to their crisis-stricken homeland or to join family in other Latin American countries as a lockdown meant to contain the spread of the novel coronavirus has left them without work.

Ecuador, with a population of 17.4 million, has over 10,000 confirmed cases of the new coronavirus and more than 500 deaths.

The outbreak has ravaged the economy of the oil-producing country and overwhelmed sanitary authorities in the largest city of Guayaquil, where corpses remained in homes or for hours on the streets.

Venezuelan migrants, millions of whom fled economic crisis in their homeland, often work informal jobs or beg on the streets. Shutdowns of businesses across the region have cut many off from their meager income sources.

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