Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro (L) is greeted on arrival at the José Martí International Airport in Havana by Cuban foreign minister Bruno Rodríguez Parrilla
By Caribbean News Now contributor
HAVANA, Cuba -- Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro arrived in Cuba’s capital Havana shortly after 9 pm on Sunday night to participate in Monday’s meeting of Political Council of the Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of Our America – Treaty of Trade of the Peoples (ALBA-TCP).
The president and his wife, Cilia Flores, were met at the José Martí International Airport by Cuban foreign minister Bruno Rodríguez Parrilla.
The meeting in Havana was expected to ratify the final declaration adopted last month in Caracas during an extraordinary ALBA summit and to reaffirm the commitment of its member countries to the principles of the proclamation of Latin America and the Caribbean as a zone of peace, approved by the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) in January 2014 in Havana.
Strengthening unity and regional coordination capacity will be some of the other objectives of the meeting.
ALBA-TCP was established on December 14, 2004, in Havana, as an integration movement based on complementarity, solidarity and cooperation, precepts promoted by presidents Fidel Castro of Cuba and Hugo Chávez of Venezuela, as an alternative to the Free Trade Area for the Americas, then proposed by the United States.
The eleven member countries are Antigua and Barbuda, Bolivia, Cuba, Dominica, Ecuador, Grenada, Nicaragua, St Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, St Vincent and the Grenadines and Venezuela. Suriname was admitted as a guest country in 2012.