The government of Venezuela sent Wednesday its fourth humanitarian mission to Ecuador in order to help that country with the disaster left by the worst earthquake in nearly a decade.
At least 570 people have died due to the earthquake, with 165 more missing, and at least 7,000 injured, while the government announced that almost 25,000 people remain in shelters.
Most of the deaths came from the coastal cities of Manta, Portoviejo and Pedernales, according to statistics provided by authorities.
Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro expressed again the solidarity of his country with Ecuador and also praised the aid provided by other countries in Latin America and beyond.
"The region of Latin America and the Caribbean has shown solidarity for the people of Ecuador," Maduro said as he explained that the new humanitarian mission strengthens the work of rescuers who are searching for survivors and providing health assistance to those affected.
The fourth Venezuelan humanitarian mission consists of rescue workers, doctors, nurses and soldiers of the Bolivarian National Armed Force with extensive experience in handling natural disasters.
Ecuadorean President Rafael Correa has expressed gratitude for all the international support his country has received, He also announced Wednesday a series of financial measures, including a tax increase, in an effort to boost reconstruction efforts.
"Rebuilding the affected areas will take years and cost millions of dollars," he said. "The short term costs are significant," Correa also said that the government will sell some of its assets.