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Alberto Fernández invited Biden, Xi Jinping over to Celac summit

Friday, January 6th 2023 - 10:59 UTC
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A positive answer from Biden is not expected A positive answer from Biden is not expected

Argentine President Alberto Fernández has invited his US and Chinese colleagues over to the upcoming Summit of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (Celac) to be held on Jan. 24 in Buenos Aires.

As pro tempore president of the bloc, Fernández sent a note to Xi Jinping to attend the event following his invitation to US President Joseph Biden last week, it was reported in Buenos Aires. Both foreign leaders are yet to respond, although diplomatic sources in the Argentine capital admitted it was just a formality. A positive answer from Biden is not expected.

During the last Summit of the Americas in Los Angeles, the Biden administration opposed the participation of Cuba, Venezuela, and Nicaragua. All three countries are members of Celac.

Argentina's Ambassador to the United States Jorge Argüello held a working meeting this week with the Undersecretary for Western Hemisphere Affairs Brian Nichols, during which the “state of the bilateral relationship” was reviewed, the Argentine embassy said in a statement. During that encounter, President Fernández's handwritten invitation to Biden was delivered.

“The bilateral relationship is going through one of its best historical moments; the quantity and quality of the mutual visits of ministers, secretaries of state, governors, and undersecretaries, among other representatives, speaks of a great intensity and of a permanent search to achieve common ambitions,” Argüello underlined.

Meanwhile, Brazil announced Thursday it was returning to Celac following years of absence under former President Jair Bolsonaro (2019-2022).

“Extra-regional partners with which CELAC maintains regular dialogue, including the European Union, China, India, ASEAN, and the African Union, were also informed about the country's return to the regional concertation mechanism,” the Brazilian Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

The document also pointed out that Brazil had ”actively participated in the creation of Celac, by convening and hosting in 2008 in Costa do Sauípe, Bahia (northeast), the first Summit of Latin American and Caribbean countries.“

”Brazil's return to the community of Latin American states is an indispensable step for the recomposition of our diplomatic acquis and the full reinsertion of the country in the international community,” the Foreign Ministry added.

Brasilia also confirmed that President Luiz Inácio Lula Da Silva would be attending the VII Summit of Heads of State and Government of Celac.

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