A Venezuelan refugee who had six relatives aboard a pirogue which disappeared on May 16 with 29 passengers which left Güiria for Chaguaramas is pleading for authorities in T&T and Venezuela to locate them.
Kender Berra, who has been living in this country for more than a year, believes the missing pirogue Ana María was hijacked.
Berra, who is originally from El Tigre, Anzoátegui state, told a Venezuelan news outlet he and his brother waited in vain on a wharf in Chaguaramas for the vessel to arrive.
In two days, a total of 47 Venezuelans appeared in the San Fernando Magistrates Court for illegally entering the country. The majority have been slapped with fines totally $123,000.
Twenty-two appeared on Monday, 19 were fined a total of $57,000 and three were discharged. On Wednesday, 25 Venezuelans, including six women, pleaded guilty before First Court Senior Magistrate Jo-Anne Connor.
They admitted to entering the country at a port of entry which is not designated port and failing to report to an immigration officer.
In order to force embattled Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro to act to defuse the current situation affecting the south-American nation, which has led to millions of citizens fleeing the country, a US intelligence expert is recommending that all cash inflows to Venezuela be stopped immediately.
In addition, he said another sign of good faith by Maduro would be the immediate release of close to 800 political prisoners.
While the ban on Venezuelan ferries continued at the Cedros port, three Venezuelan cargo boats docked at Kings Wharf, San Fernando early Wednesday, bringing goods from Venezuela.
Around 7:30 am, Guardian Media captured the arrival of the vessels which came from Guiria.
One was a larger ship while the two others were smaller pirogues.
Most of the Venezuelans did not speak English and they shied away from media cameras.
However, a source said the cargo included ground provisions from the South American mainland.
Even though Minister of National Security Stuart Young says the Cedros port is operational, three Venezuelan ferries are still awaiting clearance to come to the Cedros port with 86 legitimate passengers.
A source who requested anonymity said up to noon on Tuesday, the vessels Virgen de Valle from Guiria which carried 28 passengers, another vessel named Virgen de Valle from Tucupita carrying 30 passengers and Poseidon carrying 18 passengers failed to dock at the Cedros port.
Just two weeks after a dozen people died while trying to flee Venezuela for T&T in a pirogue, the crew and passengers of another vessel coming from Venezuela are currently in a standoff with the T&T Coast Guard, fearing they may suffer the same fate.
The messages from Venezuela started drying up at around noon yesterday, but Venezuelans living in T&T who support Juan Guaido are hopeful their country is heading back to democracy.
“The communication break down at about 11 o’clock this morning and before that, all the videos were coming. Univision is the only means of us really knowing what is really going on,” said Yamine Trotman, a Venezuelan national of Trinidad descent who gathered at the Queen’s Park Savannah, Port-of-Spain, yesterday.
National Security Minister Stuart Young has reiterated the Government's position of non-interference and non-intervention in Venezuela, as riots have broken out amid an attempted coup.
The minister issued a statement Tuesday that said little more than what has been said by the government before.
The following is a statement the Minister Young.
"It has been reported that certain elements of the Venezuelan military have indicated support for Mr. Juan Guaido and that support has resulted in disturbances in Venezuela.
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo says the Trump administration backs Venezuelan congressional leader Juan Guaido in his call for a military uprising against President Nicolas Maduro.
Pompeo says in a tweet that the US "fully supports" Guaido's call for the start of "Operacion Libertad."
He says the US stands with the Venezuelan people "in their quest for freedom and democracy."
He says democracy cannot be defeated.
The Trump administration has led calls for countries to recognize Guaido as Venezuela's legitimate leader since January.