CARACAS, Monday August 10, 2009 | Update
Venezuela intends to include a paragraph on the "ethical responsibility" of the mass media in the final declaration of the Summit of the Union of South American Nations (Unasur) taking place on Monday in Quito. However, this proposal has been questioned by some countries.
The Brazilian newspaper O Estado de Sao Paulo reported on Sunday that the Venezuelan delegation put forward the idea in the technical meetings held before the summit.
Brazil's Minister of Foreign Affairs "was alarmed" by the proposal and the delegations of Uruguay and Chile strongly criticized it, according to a Brazilian diplomatic source quoted by the newspaper.
"Uruguay and Chile so vehemently opposed to the proposal that Brazil had not need to intervene," said the diplomatic source quoted by the Brazilian daily.
Given the opposition of these two countries, there will be no consensus on the Venezuelan proposal and the text will not be included in the final declaration of the Quito Summit, where Chile will be handing over the Pro Tempore presidency of the South American organization.
The Brazilian Foreign Minister feared that Venezuela or any other South American country could impose restrictions on the freedom of the press in the future by hiding behind the Unasur declaration, said the same source.
Besides, the Brazilian newspaper said that another goal of the Venezuelan delegation was to include in the Quito Declaration a paragraph on the current South American financial architecture and the global crisis.
This could open the door for Unasur to adopt monetary mechanisms already approved by the Bolivarian Alternative for the Americas (ALBA), which has been sponsored by Venezuela.
This would include the adoption of the Sucre, the common virtual currency approved by the ALBA members (Venezuela, Bolivia, Nicaragua, Honduras, Cuba and Dominica), plus Ecuador, for purposes of replacing the US dollar as the regional trade currency in the near future.
Translated by Gerardo Cárdenas
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.