The fracture in Mercosur was candidly revealed by Uruguay's foreign minister Rodolfo Nin Novoa during an agro-business conference of cooperatives in Montevideo when he received a phone call from his Venezuelan peer Delcy Rodríguez.
Mercosur on Wednesday displayed another chapter of its internal disarray, almost farcical, when Venezuela which proclaims the presidency of the group convened a meeting at the Montevideo administrative offices that was only attended by full member Uruguay and aspiring member Bolivia.
Mercosur coordinators' address domestic and international agendas, despite admitting emergency situation
Mercosur founding countries national coordinators met on Tuesday in Montevideo and admitted that the block is going through an emergency situation because of the presidential acephaly, but agreed on proposals to overcome the challenge and in a business as usual spirit, are readying for a meeting with the EU on trade negotiations and on the Action Plan to advance closer links with the Pacific Alliance.
Uruguay back stepped on its statements referred to Brazil's “bullying with the Mercosur presidency” and admits there was a misunderstanding regarding Brazil's invitation for a joint trade promotion in third countries, according to an official clarification Wednesday release from the Uruguayan foreign ministry.
Uruguay ambassador summoned to Itamaraty after minister accuses Brazil of bullying Mercosur presidency
Brazil summoned Uruguay's ambassador on Tuesday after the neighboring country's foreign minister Rodolfo Nin Novoa accused Brazil of trying to buy its vote to block Venezuela from taking the rotating presidency of the Mercosur trade bloc.
Uruguay's Foreign Minister Rodolfo Nin Novoa said on Monday that he was opposed to the proposal that the Mercosur presidency should be held collectively, as a number of countries are opposed to Venezuela taking over the role. The proposal has been sponsored by Paraguay and Brazil for several weeks, particularly Brazil's Foreign Minister Jose Serra.
The coordinators of Mercosur founding members will decide next 23 August at a meeting in Montevideo on the legal measures to be applied on Venezuela, which self proclaimed itself the presidency of the group and is also questioned for not complying with the rules and regulations to be incorporated to the group. In that case Venezuela could lose its full member status.
Venezuela’s grim situation is impacting not only millions of households around the country: it is also sending panic waves across the Caribbean all the way to Cuba, a solid ally that for decades now has relied heavily on Chavismo’s generosity.
Mercosur founding members coordinators who met in Montevideo on Thursday to address the controversy over the presidency of the group and the self proclamation to the post by Venezuela, did finally reach some conclusions, but the most significant seems to be that they continue to disagree on the steps to follow and are prepared for another round of talks.
Venezuela has defiantly confirmed that is will fully exercise the self-proclaimed presidency of Mercosur, despite the opposition from Argentina, Brazil and Paraguay, who consider the chair vacant and are meeting in Montevideo to find an alternative for the six month mandate.