at the EU-Celac Summit
Cuba and Venezuela accept an explicit condemnation of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, while the Ortega dictatorship remains alone in its rejection
HAVANA TIMES – The leaders of the European Union and the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (Celac) expressed this Tuesday, July 18, 2023, their “deep concern” about “the war in Ukraine” in the final declaration of the summit held in Brussels, without the lone support of Nicaragua.
“We express our deep concern about the ongoing war against Ukraine, which continues to cause immense human suffering and is exacerbating existing fragilities in the global economy, restricting growth, increasing inflation, disrupting the supply chain, increasing energy and food insecurity and raising the risks for financial stability”, the statement states.
The leaders also supported “all diplomatic efforts aimed at a just and sustainable peace in accordance with the UN charter.”
They also supported the efforts of the UN Secretary General, António Guterres, to get Russia to comply again with the agreement to allow the export Ukrainian grain through the Black Sea, after Moscow disassociated itself from the pact on Monday, July 17.
The statement included a footnote specifying that Nicaragua did not support the near unanimous stance on the Ukraine issue.
Ukraine marks summit negotiations
“This declaration has been supported by all the countries, with the exception of one that has not been able to sign it due to a paragraph,” declared the president of the European Council, Charles Michel, at the post-summit press conference.
The condemnation of the war in Ukraine has marked the negotiations throughout the summit, since the EU has insisted on condemning it, while Nicaragua, Cuba and Venezuela opposed it.
The second day of the summit began with support for the territorial integrity of the countries based on the United Nations Charter, without a specific mention of the conflict in Europe —which the EU was not willing to accept—, and in the final text it concluded with a condemnation of “the war in Ukraine”.
“We discussed a lot, of course, the fact that everyone wants this war to end and that peace must be lasting and that it must be centered on the UN Charter,” said European Commission President Ursula Von der Leyen.
Cuba and Venezuela accept condemnation
As the negotiations progressed, Havana and Caracas accepted an explicit condemnation of the Russian invasion of Ukraine and Nicaragua was left alone in its rejection, as has already taken place in the UN General Assembly, voting against several resolutions.
Nicaragua has voted against all the resolutions of the UN General Assembly in which the war has been condemned, Cuba has abstained, and Venezuela did not vote.
The interim Prime Minister of the Netherlands, Mark Rutte, considered that the EU-CELAC summit was “a complete success” and stressed that “unanimity with almost sixty countries is impossible, not even in the European Union of 27 countries is it always possible to all agree”.
In an interview with EFE, Cuban Foreign Minister Bruno Rodríguez highlighted his country’s “flexible and constructive” willingness to seek a consensus formula on Ukraine acceptable to the 27 members of the EU and the 33 members of Celac.
He also said that “the fact that there is no agreement on an issue or two should not prevent a final declaration” from the summit.