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Mar 3, 2022

Central American Heads of Government Join Caribbean Leaders in San Pedro

As the CARICOM meetings wrapped up, preparations were being made for the CARICOM-S.I.C.A. Summit. Arrivals began as early as Wednesday evening for the summit of Central American leaders that took place today. It ended with the signing of the San Pedro Declaration. News Five’s Paul Lopez reports.

 

Paul Lopez, Reporting

S.I.C.A. Representatives began arriving at three p.m. on Wednesday, with the arrival of His Excellency Felix Ulloa, the Vice President of El Salvador. This was followed at five thirty p.m., by the President of Costa Rica, His Excellency Alvarado Quesada. Less than an hour later, His Excellency Eduardo Enrique Reina Garcia, the Minister of Foreign Affairs for Honduras was welcomed. The Minister of Foreign Affairs for Panama, Her Excellency Erika Mauynes came in at nine p.m. And, then the President of Guatemala, His Excellency Alejandro Giammattei, marked the end of the arrivals of S.I.C.A. representatives, and the opening of the CARICOM-S.I.C.A. Summit.

 

John Briceño

Prime Minister John Briceño

“The last time the heads of the two sub-regions met in Salvador was more than a decade ago. Then, heads made a solid commitment to strengthen corporation and engagement in areas of mutual interest that were integral to our development. The fact is, our efforts have been less than satisfactory, considering the common plight we face and the many opportunities for our collaboration which we missed. This must now change. Clearly much has happened in the world since 2011, the global and regional landscape has changed significantly. Our partnership therefore must be strategic. It must deliver more for the people of our shared neighborhood. As nations, we are clawing our way back from severe economic downturn, occasioned by a devastating COVID-19 pandemic.”

 

Erika Mauynes, the Foreign Minister of Panama also addressed the open session. Panama has the pro-temp Presidency of S.I.C.A.

 

Erika Mauynes

Erika Mauynes, Foreign Affairs Minister, Panama

“It is not only that it has been eleven years. There is something also very important happening in the world, something very grave and difficult. So, the fact that twenty two countries are coming together cannot be lost on us and the power and message that sends is also extremely important. So, we need to embrace that and understand. If you allow me to just share a reflection with you with what that means and what we do with that power. This summit means two things, one we go back to normality. We go back to seeing ourselves face to face to the meetings, to that necessary discussion you were describing, long and necessary. But, as we go back to this quasi-normality, we need to figure out how we are going to focus our energy, how we are going to focus our attention. Think about it now as a way for survival because there is no margin for error.”

Following the opening ceremony, CARICOM and SICA representatives engaged in discussion that led to the signing of the San Pedro Declaration.

Reporting for News Five I am Paul Lopez.


Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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