From our Bureau of Great Moments That Define Latrine American Politics
How Latrine can you get? Brazil’s newly-reelected leftist president, Lula da Silva, who promised to “save democracy”, has given a warm welcome to Venezuela’s dictator at a regional summit.
Some participants criticized Lula in Brazil for his embrace of Maduro, but he has brushed off their remarks as “absurd,” insisting that the Venezuelan dictator is a “duly elected” president and that all accusations of human rights abuses in Venezuela are “completely exaggerated.”
So Latrine. So utterly Latrine. So nauseating.
Abridged from Granma Ultra Lite (Associated Press)
The Brazilian president’s strong support of Venezuela’s authoritarian leader marred the unity Tuesday at a South American summit that Brazil convened in hopes of reviving a bloc of the region’s 12 politically polarized countries.
Brazil’s President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva proposed during his opening speech the creation of a regional currency to rival the U.S. dollar in his bid for the dozen countries to work more closely together.
But Lula’s warm embrace of Venezuela’s authoritarian leftist President Nicolás Maduro just ahead of the meeting drew pushback from some of his neighbors and threatened the sense of unity the Brazilian president was seeking.
Uruguay’s President Luis Lacalle Pou said the “worst thing we can do” is pretend there are no significant human rights problems in Venezuela.
Lula, in response, said that “no one is forced to agree with anybody”.
Lula wants to revive the Union of South American Nations, or Unasur, which launched in 2008 to boost cooperation but became largely defunct a decade later in disputes over leadership. Countries with right-leaning leaders at the time — including Brazil — saw the bloc as having a leftist bent and objected especially to the inclusion of Venezuela’s Maduro.
A day ahead of the meeting he hosted Maduro in their first bilateral meeting and came out in full support of the Venezuelan leader, calling it “absurd” for some governments not to recognize him as the duly elected leader. He also criticized economic sanctions that countries such as the U.S. have imposed to get Venezuela to liberalize its politics, calling them “completely exaggerated.”
Lula said it is up to Maduro to build his country’s “narrative” and “make Venezuela a sovereign country once again. And our opponents will have to apologize for the damage they’ve done.”
The Brazilian president drew criticism from colleagues in the region both on the right — Uruguay’s Lacalle — and the left — Chile’s President Gabriel Boric.
Whole story HERE