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  • A united and democratic Venezuela will to face up to the future
  • EU-CELAC Summit should take place in 2018 in San Salvador
  • Concern at the growing threats to world peace

The government of Venezuela must respect legislative powers and the rule of law, Euro-Latin American Parliamentary Assembly (EuroLat) co-presidents said on Thursday.

In a joint declaration issued at the end of EuroLat’s tenth plenary session, the Assembly’s two co-presidents, Ramón Jáuregui (S&D, ES) and Roberto Requião (Brazil) call on Caracas to “guarantee peace, coexistence and freedom for all, within the framework of absolute compliance with the Constitution”.

“Only a united and democratic Venezuela will be able to face up to the future”, they add. Messrs Jáuregui and Requião welcome the calling of elections for local councils and governors on 15 October 2017 and encourage the government and the opposition to conduct a dialogue and agree an election timetable “so that the people can decide on Venezuela’s future peacefully and freely, by means of an individual, universal and secret vote”.

The EuroLat co-presidents regret that the events in Venezuela led to the postponement of third EU-CELAC Summit, which would have brought together the leaders of both blocs in San Salvador next month, and ask their governments to hold the summit in the Salvadorian capital in 2018. Strengthening the Bi-regional Strategic Partnership “is more necessary than ever” in order to tackle the great geopolitical and economic challenges, they add.

Read the full joint declaration in Spanish

EuroLat legislators voice concern at the growing threats to world peace arising from the escalating tension in Asia, the Middle East and Eastern Europe and call on the major powers, the international community and the countries directly affected “to act cautiously and wisely in managing these crises”. The UN Security Council should take firm and united action to guarantee peace, they underline.

The need for maximum unity against terrorism, the cracks in the functioning of the democratic process in various countries represented in our Assembly, progress in the Colombian peace process, policies to reduce inequality, and work towards sound and fair fiscal policies and against tax havens are also cited in the bilateral statement.

In the face of natural disasters (hurricanes, earthquakes, floods and droughts), parliamentarians point to the importance of maintaining their commitment to combating climate change under the terms of the 2016 Paris Agreement. Following the decision of the United States to withdraw from the agreement, Europe and Latin America must step up their efforts to curb global warming, they say.

New rules, promoted and agreed by the UN, are needed to manage migration flows, say EuroLat legislators. In view of the tragedy taking place in the Mediterranean, they demand a new European immigration policy. They also deplore the policies adopted by the US administration in its determination to build “pointless walls” and persecute hundreds of thousands of young Americans settled in the country.

Quick facts about EuroLat

The Euro-Latin American Parliamentary Assembly (EuroLat) is the parliamentary institution of the Bi-regional Strategic Association established in June 1999 in the context of the EU-CELAC Summit (between European Union-Latin American and Caribbean). EuroLat was created in 2006. It meets in plenary session once a year.

EuroLat is a multilateral Parliamentary Assembly composed of 150 members, 75 from the European Parliament and 75 from the Latin America, including Parlatino (Latin American Parliament), Parlandino (Andean Parliament), Parlacen (Central American Parliament) and Parlasur (Mercosur Parliament). The Mexican and Chilean congresses are also represented via the EU/Mexico and EU/Chile  joint parliamentary committees.

New Latin American co-president

At the closing session, the Latin American component of the Assembly elected Elías Castillo, from Panama and current President of Parlatino, as the new co-president of EuroLat, replacing Roberto Requião.