ALBA Summit and the People’s Trade Agreement on Indigenous and Afro-descendant People Begins in Ecuador

Posted on June 24, 2010

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Update:  Remarks from Ecuador’s President, Rafael Correa Today at Opening Session

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The Ecuadorean President Praises Performance of the ALBA

HAVANA, Cuba, June 24 (acn) Rafael Correa, President of the Republic of Ecuador, highlighted 
on Thursday in Cuenca the progress of the Bolivarian Alliance for the Americas (ALBA), the 
summit conference of which began today in that country.
   The coordination of commercial policies between the ALBA member countries and its 
achievements in terms of compensation in the area were praised by the head of state, in 
statements published by the Web site of El Ciudadano newspaper.
   Correa specified, as an objective of the meeting of heads of state on Friday, the 
coordination of these policies with the ancient peoples of the region, in search of increasing 
their participation in the lives of their nations.
   An example of this, he stressed, is the declaration of Ecuador as a multinational state in 
the new Constitution.
   He referred to the need of defining joint policies in the face of non-renewable resources.
   We can’t sustain the absurd of being beggars while sitting on a sack of gold; we have to 
develop exploitation in a responsible way from the social and environmental points of view, he 
said, in reference to the various decades of neo-liberalism that made a few people richer at 
the expense of the poverty of the majority.
   In reference to the People’s Trade Treaties boosted by the ALBA, he pointed out that it 
aims at the encouragement of exchanges between countries, with the most sensitive in mind.
   On Thursday, representatives from indigenous populations and Afro-descendants met in the 
Ecuadorean city of Otavalo, in the province of Imbabura, with the purpose of finding formulas 
to increase their prominence in the social and political lives of their nations.
   Joining participants on Friday will be the presidents and heads of delegations of the 
regional bloc’s member countries, who will issue a final declaration.

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Pondera Presidente de Ecuador realizaciones del ALBA

Cuban News Agency
www.cubanews.ain.cu

Ecuador Hosts ALBA Summit  
By Redaction AHORA / redaccion@ahora.cu / Thursday, 24 June 2010 10:45

Summit of the Bolivarian Alliance of the Peoples of our America (ALBA) and the Peoples” Trade Agreement (PTA) on indigenous and Afro-descendant people begins Thursday in the Ecuadorian city of Otavalo.

Delegations from eight ALBA nations will meet for two days: Antigua and Barbuda, Bolivia, Cuba, Dominica, Ecuador, Nicaragua, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, and Venezuela, with Guatemala attending as a guest.

According to Ecuadorian Foreign Minister Ricardo Patiño, the objective of the summit meeting of statesmen, governors and elected indigenous and Afro-descendent authorities is to begin a multinational dialogue on intercultural and plurinational states.

Along with Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa, the presence has been confirmed of Bolivian President Evo Morales, Venezuela’s Hugo Chavez, and Cuban Vice President Esteban Lazo, as well as leaders from other member countries.

Delegations, without their heads of state, are expected to arrive on Thursday in Otavalo, 110 kilometers (63 miles) from Quito, and to participate in the forum’s opening ceremony with indigenous and Afro-descendant authorities at the Federico Paez Coliseum, where a presidential summit will take place on Friday.

On Thursday, delegates will hear central lectures by the foreign minister of the Bolivian Plurinational State, David Choquehuanca, and the Ecuadorian minister of peoples, social movements and citizen participation, Alexandra Ocles.

There will be four commissions: Exercising Interculturalism in Public Functions; Economic, Political and Social Rights against Racism; Public Initiatives in Response to Climate Change, and Nature and International Trade Rights among Peoples. / PL

Venezuela prepares climate change proposals with ALBA partners
VHeadline News Editor
Patrick J. O’Donoghue
2010-06-24 00:20:30 – Environment Minister Alejandro Hitcher has held a meeting with the Foreign Ministry climate change negotiating team and environmental groups to prepare for an important meeting among member countries of the Bolivarian Alliance for the Americas (ALBA).

VHeadline News Editor Patrick J. O’Donoghue reports:

Member countries are expected to draw up and agree on proposals and positions vis-a-vis the Cancun summit at the end of the year.

The Minister confirmed that the recent climate change meeting in Bonn is under review and the intention is to represent not just ALBA’s point of view but that of Latin American
people. However, no details were forthcoming about the conclusions of the Bonn meeting two weeks ago at which Venezuela participated.

No account has been rendered to the public by the negotiating teams, despite Venezuela being criticized for its stance on smaller islands requesting climate change data.

Venezuela and ALBA’s main principles, Hitcher reiterated, continue to be the same: it is no just a matter of changing the climate but the capitalist system. Secondly, any agreements in the UN should be the result of consensus and finally, insistence on the inter-relation between earth and life and building a system that preserves and protects the rights of Mother Earth.

Hitcher was accompanied by Venezuela’s chief negotiator, Claudia Salerno, who highlighted the involvement of social movements in the environmental debate.

There are some other aspects that need clarification in the ALBA group, such as the accusation highlighted in the UK Sunday Times that ALBA observer member, Grenada allegedly gave its vote to allow Japanese whaling companies to fish and capture whales.

Grenada has dismissed the allegations, along with the Caribbean island of St.Kitts

Patrick J. O’Donoghue
news.editor@vheadline.com

www.vheadline.com/patrick

www.vheadline.com/readnews.asp?id=93523