USNS Comfort to deploy next month to help Venezuelan refugees

Posted at 10:10 AM, May 08, 2019
and last updated 2019-05-08 10:10:20-04

NORFOLK, Va. – The hospital ship USNS Comfort is deploying from Naval Station Norfolk next month to help treat Venezuelan refugees.

A release from U.S. Southern Command says the ship is expected to head to the Caribbean, Central America, and South America “to conduct humanitarian medical assistance missions in support of regional partners and in response to the regional impacts of the Venezuela political and economic crisis.”

The humanitarian mission is expected to last five-months, though which countries the Comfort will stop in has yet to be announced.

“The USNS Comfort represents our enduring promise to our partners in the Western Hemisphere – our shared neighborhood,” Admiral Craig Faller, commander of U.S. Southern Command, said in a release. “U.S. Southern Command is committed to the region in support of our Caribbean and Latin American partners, as well as displaced Venezuelans who continue to flee the brutal oppression of the former Maduro regime and its interlocking, man-made political, economic and humanitarian crises.”

The Comfort deployed on a similar mission to help Venezuelan refugees last October, returning to Hampton Roads in December.