South America seeks integration, not ideologies, Chile foreign minister says
Chilean Foreign Minister Roberto Ampuero said that this Friday’s summit in Santiago of the presidents of seven South American countries is focused on the integration of all countries of the region while putting aside ideologies and any kind of marginalization.
The Forum for the Progress and Development of South America (Prosur) seeks “an integration that thinks, not in ideological terms, but about getting concrete results that favor the people and is therefore a pragmatic integration,” Ampuero said Thursday after a meeting of foreign ministers of South America.
He later said that the launch of Prosur will be “a new stage” of integration.
“We want integration in infrastructure, energy, healthcare, and in the ways we join forces to deal with natural disasters and create measures of trust in every country,” he said.
“This integration must also include security, because these days international crime operates in a coordinated way and therefore we cannot fight crime separately. All of these are goals of Prosur,” Ampuero said.
The foreign minister of the southern nation noted that Friday’s summit of South American presidents at La Moneda presidential palace in Santiago is also putting an end to the paralyzation of the Union of South American Nations (Unasur).
“A new step is being taken, which is the integration of South America. A necessary step that had to come because integration has been paralyzed for too long in our region. Five years is too long for a region like South America,” he said.
The idea of this new bloc was originated by the presidents of Chile, Sebastian Piñera, and Colombia, Ivan Duque, to replace Unasur, an organization founded in 2008 with 12 member states, of which the only ones remaining today are Bolivia, Guyana, Surinam, Uruguay and Venezuela.
Piñera said in recent weeks that Prosur will focus on “better coordination, regional cooperation and integration, freedom from ideologies, being open to all and 100 percent committed to democracy and human rights.
Meeting this Friday at the summit of South American presidents, besides Piñera as host, are Mauricio Macri of Argentina, Jair Bolsonaro of Brazil, Ivan Duque of Colombia, Lenin Moreno of Ecuador, Mario Abdo of Paraguay and Martin Vizcarra of Peru.