Chávez and Raúl during the Ninth Summit of ALBA. Photo: Raúl Abreu
Ninth ALBA Summit Moves towards Latin American Integration
The Ninth Summit of the Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of the Americas (ALBA) that took place April 19 at the Teresa Carreno Theatre in Venezuela produced fruitful discussions targeting regional integration and independence.
Juana Carrasco Martín
April 20, 2010 3:03:05 CDT
The Ninth Summit of the Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of the Americas (ALBA) that took place April 19 at the Teresa Carreno Theatre in Venezuela produced fruitful discussions, debate and solutions regarding regional integration and independence.
Coinciding with the summit, Venezuelans celebrated the 200th anniversary of the beginning of the wars of independence and paid tribute to independence hero Simon Bolivar, widely recognized as the liberator of Latin America.
Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez praised the youngest generations for their strong commitment to Latin American integration, and willingness to back it up with action if needed.
He also criticised the selfish stance of power-hungry governments focused on profits to the detriment of human needs.
During the summit, regional leaders discussed the Latin American-Caribbean panorama and solutions to the challenges facing our peoples. Bolivian President Evo Morales called for more environmental awareness, “We are the sons and daughters of the Earth; we cannot permit capitalism because it disregards humanity, oppresses men and women, and drains the earth’s natural resources.”
“The time has come to fight against a system that undermines life on earth…economically speaking, we are better off without US imperialism and the International Monetary Fund (IMF),” Morales concluded.
For his part, Cuban President Raul Castro expressed his joy of being able to take part in the Ninth ALBA Summit, which coincided with the April 19, 1810 bicentennial of Venezuelan independence. “The struggle for Latin American and Caribbean integration started here two centuries ago,” said Raul Castro, who congratulated Venezuelans on behalf of Fidel and the Cuban people.
Raul also praised the work being done by the ALBA, which he called a regional mechanism of integration that champions the ideals of Latin American independence and strives to find solutions to regional problems. Among the ALBA’s achievements is their overwhelming success with their literacy campaigns, training human resources, and developing psycho-genetic studies in member countries.
Lastly, the Cuban president spoke about the 49th anniversary of the Cuban victory against the CIA-sponsored Bay of Pigs mercenary invasion in April 1961. He also criticized US-promoted slander campaigns against Cuba that have attempted to discredit the Cuban Revolution ever since.
Raul warned that our peoples must not be misled by enemy propaganda. “We know from experience that our only alternative is to unite in a common cause, so that we can fight and win.”
Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa stressed the need to fight relentlessly to achieve real Latin American independence, sovereignty and integration.
Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega and Caribbean leaders Ralph Gonsalves, Baldwin Spencer and Roosevelt Skerrit also urged to continue to struggle for emancipation and regional unity.