Brazil could be forced to abandon its comfortable neutrality and help finding a negotiated solution to the Argentine/Uruguay dispute over the pulp mills, if its regional leadership role is not be eroded, argues Monday the Sao Paulo financial daily Valor.
Mercosur Foreign Affairs ministers are scheduled to discuss in Brasilia "the constant road blocks by Argentine environmentalists unhappy with the construction of pulp mills on the River Uruguay".
"It's unthinkable that neighboring countries, partners in a free trade agreement, can live with picket blocking roads that should ensure the free circulation of people and goods among country members", writes Sergio Leo in Valor.
Another Brazilian leading newspaper also analyzes the President Lula da Silva administration regarding its neighbors and praised the fact that Foreign Affairs minister Celso Amorim has begun to mend the "debilitated relations" with Mercosur junior members by visiting last week Uruguay and Paraguay.
However another prestigious financial publication, Gazeta Mercantil sounds rather pessimistic about Brazil's role in finding a solutng a short interview with Brazil's Foreign Affairs minister.
But according to Minister Amorim, "Brazil is very close (to finding a solution) in a friendly way but without saying it does have a solution".
"They have to sit and talk and I'm certain they'll find a solution", Amorim is quoted by Gazeta Mercantil.
Meantime in Montevideo a high ranking Uruguayan diplomat said Uruguay will accuse Argentina before the International Court of The Hague for the recurrent road and international bridge blockings perpetrated by Argentine environmentalists protesting the construction of the Finnish company Botnia pulp mill on the shores of a border river.
Uruguayan ambassador in France, Hector Gros Espiell said the demand will be presented tomorrow Tuesday or Wednesday and "we will be raims fraud in the presidential election and refuses to admit defeat, has promised that his organized "peaceful" pickets both in Congress and the streets will obstruct the "illegitimate" administration of President Calderón.
"The truth is one feels a bit frustrated seeing our Latinamerica again facing a complicated situation. These images traveled the world and showed a continent with signs of lack of governance, populism. It was not at all stimulating", said Senator Frei who was among the distinguished guests next to former US president George Bush, OAS secretary general Jose Miguel Insulza and the heir of the Spanish throne, Prince Felipe.
Contrary to similar ceremonies in the rest of the continent, most leaders of the region did not participate.
"The big issue is whether President Calderon has the political capacity to ensure governance and reach minimum agreements with the third main party, PRI and some sectors of the PRD (from Lopez Obrador) who are willing to agree on a legislative agenda. The situation in Mexico is not easy", said Frei.
"Mr. Calderón is a capable man, a former Congress member, former Energy minister, strong leader and has always been open to dialogue, but all these qualities will be challenged and tested simultaneously in the coming weeks", forecasted the former Chilean president.
"Friday events give Latinamerica a poor image and show us a little out of touch with the rest of the world. That is why the interest of the country must be above partisan debates and dialogue is essential in politics", he emphasized.