EFE (via 14ymedio), Mexico City, October 18, 2023 — The Mexican president, Andrés Manuel López Obrador, confirmed on Wednesday the attendance of the leaders of Cuba, Colombia, Honduras, Haiti, Venezuela, Ecuador and Guatemala at the summit on migration next Sunday in Chiapas, a state on the southern border of Mexico.
“Attending will be the presidents of Central America, the Caribbean, president (Miguel) Díaz-Canel of Cuba, president (Gustavo) Petro (of Colombia), president Xiomara (Castro) of Honduras, the prime minister of Haiti (Ariel Henry), and president (Nicolás) Maduro (of Venezuela),” he revealed in his morning conference.
“The president of Ecuador (Guillermo Lasso) and the president of Guatemala (Alejandro Giammattei) are also coming; so far nothing more; I don’t know of others. They will be represented, in the event that a president can’t come, by a vice president or a chancellor. We are going to meet on Sunday,” he added.
According to what was stated by the president last week, the presidents of El Salvador, Belize, Costa Rica and Panama have yet to be confirmed. At the meeting in Palenque, López Obrador will look for a common proposal from the region on migration and then present it in November to the President of the United States, Joe Biden.
“We can do a lot if we help each other. The meeting is called “For a Fraternal Neighborhood and in Search of Well-being,” so let’s see what we can do together, how we can help each other,” he said.
The meeting will take place while Mexico and Central America face an “unprecedented” migratory flow, as the International Organization for Migration (IOM) warned last month, with up to 16,000 migrants arriving at the Mexican borders every day, according to López Obrador.
“(The meeting) is very important because it’s a problem that can get worse. It is already worrying, because the number of migrants is growing and we have to attend to it,” said the Mexican president. López Obrador will insist on “attending to the causes, going to the bottom of things, not just holding back or thinking about militarizing the borders or building walls, which don’t solve the problem.”
Questioned about whether he will ask Latin American countries to detain migrants before arriving in Mexico, the president said that all governments should do everything possible to address migration. “In all cases there is interest in helping migrants, in all cases, but many countries are going through difficult economic situations. They don’t have a budget or there are conflicts, either due to political confrontations or due to the blockade in the case of Cuba, which is inhumane,” he said.
Translated by Regina Anavy
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