From the interim presidency of the Group of Latin American and Caribbean Nations (CELAC), Argentina is promoting the meeting of the regional bloc in parallel with the Ninth Summit of the Americas, scheduled for June 6-10 in Los Angeles, USA. The initiative has Mexico’s support and will seek to give a place to representatives of countries that the United States has excluded – such as Cuba, Venezuela and Nicaragua – as well as to demand a change in Washington’s policies toward Latin America, a promise that has not been fulfilled. Although Donald Trump is gone and replaced by Joe Biden.
The organization of the CELAC meeting was advanced at a meeting between Foreign Minister Santiago Cafiero and his Mexican counterpart Marcelo Ebrard in Mexico City. Official sources indicated that “the event will be held in parallel without conflicting with the schedules of the Summit of the Americas, and the spirit is to remain united as a bloc despite the differences.” The idea is that heads and heads of missions of the group’s countries share breakfast or dinner “with a critical spirit and their own agenda”.
The decision comes after a number of regional presidents announced that they would not attend the meeting organized by the White House after the Biden administration announced its refusal to invite Cuba, Venezuela and Nicaragua. Mexican Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador was among those who expressed this position. The Argentine government also expressed its refusal to exclude these three countries and insisted on holding the summit “without exceptions.”
Although progress in organizing the meeting of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean Nations seems to confirm the presence of Alberto Fernandez in Los Angeles, they assured the government that it will not be dissolved until next week if he travels.
On Thursday, the president received Christopher Dodd, the special advisor to the United States government for the Ninth Summit of the Americas, to whom Biden entrusted the task of ensuring the participation of the leaders of the three largest countries in the region. Dodd has already met in recent days with the President of Brazil, Jair Bolsonaro, and with the President of Chile, Gabriel Borek, who has confirmed that they will attend.
“Argentina will work for the success of the summit, with everyone,” Fernandez explained to the US envoy. At the meeting in Casa Rosada, which was conducted in a cordial tone according to those present, Fernandez spoke in his capacity as CELAC President and made some friendly remarks about US foreign policy toward the region. Fernandez told Dodd that the US had a “hard policy” with Donald Trump “and not much has changed with the new administration regarding Latin America,” noting that he was “ashamed” that “there is a six-decade embargo against Cuba, five years for Venezuela and this It has not changed during the pandemic.
The President uttered the same words as he participated in the San Martin Palace in the Third Regional Meeting of Ministers of Education of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States. “How long will we be partners?” Fernandez said, “I will no longer be silent, what I say here in the North, and it would be great if the countries suffering today would join in this reality.” .
From Mexico City, at a joint press conference shown today, Cafiero and Ebrard highlighted both countries’ rejection of Washington’s resolve and compared the position the United States is taking at this summit with the reality demonstrated by the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States, a mechanism that gives “very much value” . A testament to “a world in which all countries, without exception, participate, are respected and all voices are heard” despite their “diversity”.
The organization of the CELAC meeting will have to determine how the three countries excluded from the Summit of the Americas will be represented on American soil, as leaders Nicolas Maduro, Daniel Ortega and Miguel Diaz-Canel will not be able to reach Los Angeles. Possibilities are limited to participation through virtual channels or the presence of envoys sent by those countries to the summit’s health table, where delegates from all over the continent can attend.