Paraguay plans to publicly denounce before the United Nations General Assembly that Venezuela’s incorporation to Mercosur is illegal and so is the temporary suspension imposed on the country by the trade block, anticipated President Federico Franco.
The president speaking to the Paraguayan media after meeting UN Secretary General on Sunday revealed he advanced that next Thursday when addressing the UN General Assembly he will state that Paraguay was “illegally and illegitimately” suspended by Mercosur and Unasur (Union of South American Nations).
“We told the Secretary General that we would take a few minutes to defend Paraguay’s position, and to defend the mechanism of impeachment applied by the Senate. We also told the Secretary General that the government of my predecessor (Fernando Lugo), to the police officer responsible for the killings on 15 June at Curuguaty was rewarded by naming him Chief of Police and the second in command at the massacre, as head of one of the police zones of the country”.
“This was condemned by public opinion which motivated the call for the impeachment process which was almost unanimous”, said President Franco.
“I also told the Secretary General we would expose the illegitimacy and illegality of the removal of Paraguay from Mercosur and Venezuela, and also the illegal incorporation of Venezuela to the trade block”, underlined Franco.
The Paraguayan president also expressed that under no circumstances could he support statements from his Uruguayan peer Jose Mujica who argued that in Mercosur, the political must prevail over the law, because they ‘were useless’.
He added that there are other delicate issues to be considered at Mercosur level regarding for example the Venezuelan positions of condemning Israel and becoming an ally of Iran, if Venezuela at some point is confirmed as the fifth full member of Mercosur.
Mercosur openly recognizes and supports Israel, and it is one of the few countries with which it has a free trade agreement, and “as far as I know other Mercosur members trade with Iran but do not support Teheran’s current military or nuclear policies which rejects UN supervision to ensure the infrastructure they are mounting will not be used for making weapons of massive destruction. And Venezuela is an ally of that regime”.
Franco admitted that the possibility of taking Paraguay’s claims against Mercosur to the International Court of Justice in The Hague, but he understood it was more prudent for the issue to be analyzed and discussed by the government that is elected next 21 April.
However he underlined that his administration has other “strategies”, which it is considering, and which will be made public next Thursday during his speech before the UN General Assembly.
According to the Secretary General Spokesperson office during talks with President Franco, Ban Ki-moon called for political dialogue in Paraguay in anticipation of the April 2013 election.
“The Secretary General expressed his desire that in the months ahead of the 2013 election dialogue could be promoted among all political actors regarding the challenges facing the country” said the UN office, commenting on recent events in Paraguay.