Caribbean Community (CARICOM) foreign ministers and their Cuban counterpart have ended a meeting here supporting efforts by the 15-member regional grouping to find a peaceful solution to the economic and political crisis in Venezuela.
The foreign ministers who met here under the aegis of the Sixth CARICOM-Cuba Ministerial Meeting, also adopted a resolution urging that the region be declared a zone of peace, condemning the United States decision to tighten its trade and economic embargo against Havana, as well as criticise the European Union over its decision to list a number of countries as tax havens.
In addition, the meeting agreed on the need to improve trade relations between CARICOM and Cuba, climate change, condemn the efforts of developed countries to dismantle corresponding banking mechanisms as well as the current “graduation” criteria for official development assistance so as to adequately reflect the reality and specific needs of Highly-Indebted Middle Income Countries, particularly Caribbean states.
CARICOM has adopted a position of non-interference and non-intervention in the situation in Venezuela where the United States and several western countries are backing opposition parties in a bid to remove President Nicolas Maduro, who was sworn into office for a second consecutive term earlier this year.
In the resolution, the foreign ministers said that they acknowledge and “support the effort deployed by CARICOM countries and its Pro Tempore President, alongside Mexico and Uruguay through the Montevideo Mechanism for respectful dialogue in Venezuela, guided by the principles of non-interference and non-intervention in the internal affairs of states, prohibition of the threat and use of force, respect for sovereignty, adherence to the rule of law, respect for the constitutional framework and democracy, and reiterating the right of people to self–determination”.
The resolution also calls on the international community, in its relations with the countries of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC), to endorse the tenets of the Proclamation of Latin America and the Caribbean as a Zone of Peace, signed in Havana in January 2014.
The declaration recognizes, among others, the inalienable right of every State to choose its political, economic, social and cultural system as an essential condition to ensure peaceful coexistence among nations.