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Mais forte e respeitado

Latin America

Brazil acts to see that the vote is respected across the continent

Created in 2008, Unasur strengthened ties between South American countries  Photo: Ricardo Stuckert / PR 
 
Giving priority to Latin America meant far more than strengthening Mercosur and discussing tariffs or trade barriers with neighboring countries. The agenda of Brazilian foreign policy in the region involved mainly the defense of democracy. Since the first months of 2003, Brazil has acted as an articulator, to promote dialogue and ensure that national sovereignty and the will of the ballot boxes are respected.

A few days after assuming the presidency, Lula proposed the creation of the group called the Friends of Venezuela, with the participation of Brazil, United States, Spain, Mexico, Portugal and Chile. These governments brokered negotiations between President Hugo Chavez and the opposition, which had attempted a coup months before. The dialogue sponsored by the group helped cool tempers and guaranteed the holding of a recall referendum in that year, when the majority of the Venezuelan people decided to continue Chavez's term.

Want to know more?
The Friends of Venezuela group is a diplomatic victory, says ambassador

 

New agencies to ensure peace, democracy and development

Over the past 12 years, the Lula and Dilma governments took strong positions against all attempts to overthrow democratically elected governments in Latin America. The creation or strengthening of multilateral organizations is the strategy to avoid both the threats to democracy as conflicts between countries in the region.

A key step in this direction was taken in 2008 with the creation of the Union of South American Nations (UNASUR), a space for the articulation and political unity of the 12 countries of South America. In the same year the Defense Council of UNASUR was born, a military alliance to define common defense strategies and organize emergency actions against violations and attacks.
Another important step was the creation of the Banco do Sul, an institution whose purpose is to lend money to the continent's nations for the construction of infrastructure and social programs.

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Understanding Unasur

 

Now is the time of the Caribbean countries, including Cuba

Multilateralism extends beyond the borders of South America: in 2010, the Community of Latin American and Caribbean Countries, (CELAC), was created without the presence of the United States and Canada. Both oppose the entry of Cuba to the Organization of American States (OAS), but had no way to prevent the Caribbean country from being welcomed by the new organization.  Not coincidentally, the CELAC summit, in January 2014, was held in Havana, which for decades had not hosted an event of its kind.ro.

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Understanding the CELAC