File photo of Venezuela President Nicholas Maduro. Photograph:( Others )
President Nicolas Maduro is calling on Venezuelans to "stop cleaning toilets" from "economic slavery" in other countries and return home as Brazil sends troops to the border with its crisis-ridden neighbor.
"I'm telling Venezuelans ... who want to return from economic slavery: stop cleaning toilets abroad and come home to live in your homeland," AFP quoted Maduro as saying on Tuesday.
As per reports by the United Nations, nearly 1.6 million Venezuelans have fled the country since 2015 owing to recession, hyperinflation and the downfall of the economy.
With the US being a popular destination in previous years, most Venezuelans are now migrating to neighbouring countries, Euronews reports.
Colombia has been the main country to receive the Venezuelan migratory flow. Reports say that around 870,000 Venezuelans were in the country as of late July 2018.
In recent years, however, migrants have continued south towards other regional countries, with Peru, Chile, Argentina, Brazil, and Ecuador being other popular destination countries.
Maduro has blamed the country's crisis on what he says is an "economic war" that has been waged against his government and has branded the Venezuelan exodus a "right-wing campaign."
He has recently claimed that his new economic reforms will encourage migrants to return and take part in rebuilding the country.
On Wednesday, the government said that it had received thousands of requests from Venezuelans seeking to return home from abroad after Caracas lashed out at "xenophobic campaigns" against Venezuelans migrants in Latin America.
Venezuela put on a chartered airplane to bring 89 citizens back home from Peru on Monday. Peru says more than 400,000 Venezuelans fleeing poverty and economic meltdown are living in the country.