EU countries and the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) The final declaration of the two-day summit in Brussels this Tuesday (07.18.2023) condemned the war in Ukraine. Despite enormous diplomatic efforts, The delegation could not be convinced Nicaragua bows to condemnation.
“This declaration has been supported by all the countries, which could not be signed because of one paragraph,” declared the President of the Council of Europe. Charles-Michael, at a post-summit press conference. The EU insisted that the final text include a reference to Ukraine, which has faced a Russian invasion since February 2022.
The issue marked negotiations throughout the summit, where initial refusals by Venezuela, Cuba and Nicaragua to condemn the Russian invasion set the tone. As the negotiations progressed, Havana and Caracas adopted an outspoken condemnation of the invasion and Nicaragua was singled out in its rejection, as it had already voted against the resolutions in the UN General Assembly.
“We’ve had a lot of discussions about what everyone wants to see this war end and that peace last, and that’s central to the UN Charter,” European Commission President Ursula van der Leyen said. The impasse in negotiations over a consensus formula highlights the challenge of agreeing positions between the EU, a highly institutionalized bloc, and a heterogeneous forum of 33 countries such as CELAC.
Nevertheless, Dutch interim prime minister Mark Rutte deemed the summit, which was seen as an opportunity to revive relations after eight years without meetings, a “complete success” and insisted there was “almost consensus”. Sixty countries is impossible, even in the EU of 27, it is always possible for everyone to agree.
An important investment announcement by the European bloc was pushed to the background because of the debate over Ukraine, as well as a meeting between the Venezuelan government and the opposition organized by France and trade discussions and challenges such as climate change. The meeting was weighed down by a debate brought forward by Caribbean countries over reparations for centuries of colonization and slavery by European powers.
DZC (EFE, AFP)
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