Venezuela: the UN offers help for food and health

The United Nations (UN) on Saturday proposed aid to Venezuela for "urgent" issues such as food and health, severely affected by the worst economic crisis in this oil country.

"There are urgent problems in terms of health, nutrition, protection and more," said Peter Grohmann, UN coordinator in Venezuela during a meeting with President Nicolas Maduro on public television.

With the cooperation of the UN "we could find extra money" next to "the World Food Program (which) showed interest in helping Venezuela," he said.

This cooperation seeks to respond to the "needs of the Venezuelan population", which suffers from the "complicated situation", said Peter Grohmann.

Mr Maduro replied: "I ask for support for the entire food system, because that was one of the problems we encountered in 2016, 2017 and 2018".

However, the socialist government denies any "humanitarian crisis" and attributes the economic slump to US sanctions that prevent the import of food and medicine.

Last October Unicef ​​awarded $ 32 million to Venezuela to reduce maternal mortality and infant mortality and to protect childhood.

In 2016, infant mortality rose by 30.12%, with 11,466 deaths among babies aged 0 to 1 and maternal mortality by 65%, according to the Venezuelan Ministry of Health.

Under the mandate of Nicolas Maduro, the economy has halved and according to the IMF the country should still have a 5% decline in 2019. In addition to shortages of food and drugs, Venezuelans are confronted with hyperinflation, which the IMF says in 2019 10 million percent.

Nicolas Maduro, re-elected on 20 May in a voice boycotted by the opposition and denounced by a large part of the international community, started a second term of six years on Thursday.

The Venezuelan parliament, the only institution controlled by the opposition, called Friday Friday, January 23, for a & # 39; transitional government & # 39 ;.