Colombia and Chile ambassadors returned to Paraguay on Sunday after six months absence, the first two members from Unasur in doing so and in practical terms breaking the isolation imposed on the landlocked country following the political crisis which removed Fernando Lugo and had him replaced by current president Federico Franco.
Colombia confirmed on Friday that its ambassador in Paraguay, Alberto Barrantes had returned to Asunción, four months after the political crisis triggered by the removal from office of Fernando Lugo and his replacement by President Federico Franco
Chilean Foreign minister Alfredo Moreno said on Thursday it had not been decided when Chile’s ambassador to Paraguay, Christian Maquieira would be returning to Asuncion and pointed out that the diplomat continues “in consultations” with Santiago, following the removal of former president Fernando Lugo.
Colombian ambassador Jorge Barrantes will be returning to his post in Asunción this weekend, the first Unasur country member to do so, according to Paraguayan Foreign minister Jose Fernandez Estigarribia. Chile is also expected to adopt a similar decision in the near future.
Mercosur is denying Paraguay its legitimate right to the pro-tempore chair of Mercosur next 7 December at the presidential summit in Brasilia when Uruguay will receive the relay from Brazil. On that same occasion Venezuela will be attending the meeting as full member for the first time, reports the Asuncion media.
The special Unasur group for the monitoring and assessment of the political situation in Paraguay will recommend country members naming a mission that evaluates ‘in situ’ the electoral process in the landlocked country.
The Brazilian Foreign ministry revealed in a brief release that during October discussions between Mercosur and the European Union representatives both sides “confirmed their commitment to advance negotiations to achieve a wide ranging, balanced and ambitious agreement”.
The Organization of American States, OAS special envoy said on Thursday that Mercosur and Unasur ‘need’ Paraguay and the suspension of the country from the two organizations can be tracked to other interests unrelated to those events.
Brazil said it is hard to see Paraguay rejoining Mercosur and Unasur before next year’s presidential election. The two blocks suspended the landlocked country following the removal of Fernando Lugo last June and replacing him with President Federico Franco.
Uruguay’s tenure of Mercosur rotating chair will be advanced six months meaning that at the coming summit in December Brazil will hand over the next six-month responsibility to the administration of President Jose Mujica, thus skipping Paraguay which remains suspended from the South American trade group.