UNASUR’s failure goes beyond political fortunes. The rhetoric of integration fell flat in the face of reticent national bureaucracies unwilling or unable to give up sovereignty and protectionist policies.
In the strongest language so far, a joint statement signed by 14 states (and supported by 4-more Caribbean states) condemns Venezuela under the Inter-Democratic Charter. And it asks other member states to follow up if Venezuela doesn’t comply.
The breakdown of the Vatican/UNASUR dialogue in Venezuela was totally predictable. Dialogue is still the key to peacefully resolving the crisis in Venezuela, but it must have teeth to punish noncompliance.
Frente al fracaso del diálogo entre gobierno y la oposición venezolanos, es imperioso que el sistema interamericano reactive el uso de la Carta Democrática, que quedó en suspenso luego del 23 de junio.
The net effect of these new bodies has been to create parallel forums more favorable to the interests of autocrats. That may be OK for Venezuela and others, but why are Brazil and other countries going along? And where are the media?
UNASUR’s statement that it would not question the judicial decisions of its member states over the recent sentencing of Venezuelan opposition leader Leopoldo Lopez was as predictable as it was troubling. It’s a perfect example of how the region has regressed, with little respect for its troubled past and a warning of things to come.
Can southern regional organizations strengthen the bargaining position of less-developed countries and their societies’ needs in health care? By bringing together South American countries, UNASUR is advancing a broader rights agenda in access to medicines and attention to developing country demands.