CARACAS, Friday April 25, 2008 | Update
Presidents of ALBA member states hold unexpected summit in Caracas
Presidents of Bolivia Evo Morales and Nicaragua Daniel Ortega, in addition to Cuban Vice-president Carlos Lage, joined Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez on Wednesday in Caracas to hold an unexpected meeting of the Bolivarian Alternative for the Americas (ALBA).
Based on a government press release, the meeting will serve to consolidate the agreements executed in the context of ALBA, AFP quoted.
The gathering will take place amidst the political turmoil in Bolivia due, among others, to a referendum called by the flourishing Santa Cruz region to approve on May 4th its autonomous government status.
"I have convened this extraordinary ALBA summit to deal with Bolivia's problems that are about to blow up," said Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez on state-owned television channel VTV. "Both the United States government and the fascist righwing group that refuses to talk want these problems to break out. They just want to ignite war to overthrow Bolivian President (Evo) Morales."
ALBA members sign food cooperation agreement
The member countries of the Bolivarian Alternative for the Americas (ALBA) Wednesday initialed an agreement to implement "a cooperation program concerning food sovereignty and security."
The act was aired on radio and television in an obligatory simultaneous broadcast.
"ALBA is that way. It has gained dynamism, life, and a capacity of response, action and reaction before the processes taking place in our countries, our region and the world," Chavez said referring to the unexpected summit.
ALBA voices support to Bolivia' Evo Morales
An extraordinary summit of the Bolivarian Alternative for the Americas (ALBA) held in Caracas expressed support to Bolivian President Evo Morales, who faces the opposition of autonomous movements in his country.
"We have decided to air to the world a statement in solidarity and support to the Republic of Bolivia, the people of Bolivia, companion Evo Morales," said Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez.
In addition to Morales and Chávez, the meeting was attended by Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega and Cuba's Vice-president Carlos Lage. They expressed in a declaration their "staunch rejection of destabilization plans to disturb Bolivia's peace and unity."
Bolivian opposition rejects meddling
Bolivian former President Jorge Quiroga, main leader of Bolivia's opposition party, believes that Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez is "very concerned" about the "beginning of the end" of Evo Morales's administration.
According to Quiroga, "The Venezuelan president is very concerned because he knows that this is the beginning of the end of a regime comprised of 'Chavez's supporters who are traitors to their country,'" as quoted by Efe.
The leader of Venezuelan rightist alliance Podemos branded the meeting held in Venezuela by member states of the Bolivarian Alternative for the Americas (ALBA) as "meddling."
ALBA declaration branded as "serious meddling in Bolivian affairs"
The declaration the presidents of Venezuela, Nicaragua and the Vice-President of Cuba issued last Wednesday during an extraordinary meeting of the Bolivarian Alternative for the Americas (ALBA) in Caracas was branded Thursday by political analysts as a serious meddling in Bolivian domestic affairs.
Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez convened an urgent ALBA meeting to support Bolivian President Evo Morales' government. Bolivia is trapped in an institutional crisis that worsened after a referendum was convened on a new law to declare the wealthy Santa Cruz Department, east Bolivia, autonomous. The vote is scheduled for next May 4, DPA stated.
Political analyst Jorge Lazarte, who is also a member of the Constituent Assembly, said Thursday that concerns about Bolivia's domestic crisis were growing in the international community and neighboring countries.
USD 100 million for ALBA food security fund
The presidents of the member nations of the Bolivarian Alternative for the Americas (ALBA) initialed a food security agreement with a seed capital of USD 100 million, as quoted by DPA.
The Venezuelan president Hugo Chávez explained that the plan is oriented to the agro-industrial development of cereals, especially of rice and corn, leguminous and oleaginous plants, meat, milk, water, and irrigation. The move, he said, is part of a necessary "geo-economic, geopolitical, political, and ethical action in the face of a global matter of great urgency."
02:57 PM. HEAVY RAINS. Venezuelan Executive Vice-President Elias Jaua reported that the government is designing plans to support farmers, cattlemen and peasants of the state of Mérida who have been hit by heavy rains that have caused crop losses.