The IX Summit of the Americas, for the first time in the United States since its first edition in 1994, began this Wednesday in Los Angeles marked by the decision of the Democratic government to exclude Cuba, Venezuela and Nicaragua. The White House, which did not clarify its decision not to invite these countries until the last minute on Monday, ended up generating a debate between the representatives of the different Latin American governments.
For this reason, the president of Mexico, Andrés Manuel López Obrador, decided not to attend. While the Argentine, Alberto Fernández, after many twists and turns, decided to travel to Los Angeles, especially due to his status as president of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC).
Biden’s message to Latin America
US President Joe Biden said Wednesday night that democracy is a “hallmark” of the Americas and called for increased cooperation between countries in the region. “Let us come together again and renew our conviction that democracy is not only the defining feature of American history, but an essential ingredient of future Americans.”
“At this summit, we have an opportunity to come together around bold ideas, ambitious action, and to demonstrate to our people the incredible power of democracies to deliver concrete benefits and make life better for all,” he added.
The president stressed that democracy “is under assault throughout the world” and that the Inter-American Democratic Charter includes the commitment of the countries of the region to the “promotion and defense” of democracy. In addition, he proposed a reform of the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) that will be aimed at the private sector.
“Let us come together again and renew our conviction that democracy is not only the defining feature of American history, but an essential ingredient of future Americans,” Biden said.
Biden’s attention will focus on the climate crisis on Thursday, while on Friday he will sign the so-called “Los Angeles Declaration on Migration” with other countries, in which it is expected that there will be concrete commitments to manage migratory flows that could involve Spain and Canada, according to the White House.
“At this summit, we have an opportunity to come together around bold ideas, ambitious action, and to demonstrate to our people the incredible power of democracies to deliver concrete benefits and make life better for all,” said the President of the United States. Joined.
The great absentees
The leaders of Mexico, Bolivia, Guatemala and Honduras decided not to participate in this summit as a response to the exclusion of Cuba, Nicaragua and Venezuela. The issue has been the subject of debate in recent weeks in the region. Argentina and Mexico requested the participation of these three countries. Ultimately, the Biden administration decided not to invite them.
The summit will not have the presence of President Andrés Manuel López Obrador, as a protest against the veto of these countries. Marcelo Ebrard, Foreign Minister of Mexico, asked the United States on Wednesday to promote “another type of relationship in the Americas” based on “mutual respect, non-intervention and the benefit” of all the countries of the region.
“The organization that we have in the Americas must evolve, I even proposed a moment ago that we take into account what President Roosevelt said about good neighborliness to make a policy based on non-intervention and mutual benefit,” said Ebrard.
Prior to these statements, the Mexican foreign minister said that the role of the Organization of American States (OAS) is “exhausted” and proposed a “refoundation” of relations between the American countries. “It is evident that the Organization of American States and its way of acting are exhausted in the face of this reality.” Ebrard also argued that it is a “shameful role in the recent coup in Bolivia.”
In this sense, an activist from the Socialist and Liberation Party of the United States interrupted a speech by the Secretary General of the Organization of American States (OAS), Luis Almagro, accusing him of his role in the removal by force of the former president of Bolivia. , Evo Morales, in 2019.
Venezuela is the issue that once again stars on the agenda in the region. The president of the United States, Joe Biden, called Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaidó on Wednesday to reaffirm that he continues to recognize him as interim president of Venezuela, amid controversy over absences at the Summit of the Americas held in Los Angeles.
While in Los Angeles the president of the United States received the leaders of Latin America, in Tapachula, in the state of Chiapa that borders Guatemala, a caravan of migrants with 15,000 people, from some 20 countries, left for the United States.
Many of the migrants have obtained the necessary papers to travel through Mexico, known as the Multiple Migration Form, which accredits them the legal stay in the country for 186 days, to move legally through Mexico.
The United States Customs and Border Protection Office detected more than 1.7 million people without papers on the border with Mexico in the last year, until September 30, 2021. The Government of Andrés Manuel López Obrador in his The last report registered an increase of 89% year-on-year in the number of migrants in the first quarter of 2022, adding 77,626 from January to March.
The United Nations in Los Angeles
UN Secretary General António Guterres traveled to Los Angeles on Wednesday to participate in the Summit of the Americas on Thursday morning, according to the organization.
Guterres plans to attend the plenary session of leaders this Thursday and a dinner with the leaders present in the Californian city. The diplomat will return to New York on Friday, his spokeswoman said in a brief statement.