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Thursday, March 22, 2018

Climate of uncertainty over Summit of the Americas

Por Rory

A climate of uncertainty looms over the VIII Summit of the Americas - scheduled to take place in Lima - as a result of a political crisis in the region brought about by the resignation of Peruvian President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski. The diplomatic trip of the dignitaries summoned for the meeting, scheduled for April 13 and 14, faces an ambiguous panorama.

The unexpected departure of President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski kicked the dashboard of Latin American politics. According to Sputnik, international analyst Pedro Brieger, Kuczynski's resignation was "surprising", since he had managed to "draw" in December a vacancy request after allegations about his alleged link with the Brazilian multinational Odebrecht, from which he would have received money.

The attempt to remove him from office was thwarted by a split in Fuerza Popular, the opposition block of brothers Keiko and Kenji Fujimori, the expert recalled. From then on, the president of Peru "entered a period of very strong contradictions that undermined his credibility in the face of public opinion."

This was aggravated by the appearance of some videos in which "apparently they show that the Government would have bought some votes in exchange for public works in some regions", although "there is still no evidence" to affirm the veracity of these registers, the analyst said.

The expert pointed out that this political whirlwind occurs weeks before the next Summit of the Americas. The high-level meeting, scheduled for Lima on April 13 and 14, had been presented as a "conflictive" instance, due to the exclusion of Venezuela, "a central issue of regional policy," after Kuczynski withdrew the invitation to President Nicolás Maduro. Now, the "uncertainty" that surrounds the Peruvian Executive also extends to the event.

Regarding who could succeed the president, Brieger considered that "it is still too hasty" to affirm whether it will be the first vice president, Martín Vizcarra, or if new elections will be called.

The resignation "undoubtedly weakens the conservative, neoliberal current of the region, which was thought to be completely consolidated". In this regard, he cited the alleged episodes of corruption involving the president of Brazil, Michel Temer, and also members of the government of Mauricio Macri in Argentina.

"In the Argentine case there is a very important media coverage of the media that promoted the candidacy of Mauricio Macri", which does not allow to see the dimension of the different denunciations against some ministers and influential men within the Government, "involved in different facts of at least irregular financing of money abroad, "Brieger said.