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Latin America must unite to democratize vaccines and fight inequality, defends Grupo de Puebla

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São Paulo – At the fifth meeting of the Puebla Group, this Friday (29th), political leaders defended the unity of Latin American countries as the main instrument to face the geopolitical challenges and overcome the right and extreme right “wave” that invaded the continent in recent years. “How united America can go,” said, for example, the president of Argentina, Alberto Fernández. According to him, the region has gone through four difficult years with the administration of Donald Trump in the United States.

López Obrador’s victory in Mexico in 2018 “paved the way” for a return to a progressive vision, noted the Argentine. “It is essential that Latin America rejoins, as a whole. United, we can achieve much more. ” According to Fernández, the unity of the Latin American countries could facilitate the joint negotiation of vaccines against Covid-19.

Pandemic on the continent

For José Luis Zapatero, ex-president of the Spanish government from 2004 to 2011, in the current world scenario “the words that concern are access to the vaccine”. The socialist presented two proposals to be placed on the forum’s agenda. The first is that the Puebla Group claims to the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (Celac) a permanent “radiography” to monitor and update the vaccine issue. Also to monitor immunization in each country in the region and make a comparison with developed countries. “For inequality to become evident. Inform week by week how the vaccination is going, denouncing it ”, he defended.

“In line with the unity, there has to be a reflection on why democracy loses its appeal today, with seismic movements.” Zapatero exemplified such disturbing movements with the United States Capitol invasion earlier this month by extremist groups supporting now ex-President Donald Trump. The leader also proposed that the Puebla Group maintain a dialogue with the European Union, according to him, “more autonomous”, if the countries are reduced to the US-China polarization.

United Nations

Celso Amorim, a former Brazilian foreign minister, praised the message sent to the forum by António Guterres, secretary general of the United Nations. In it, the ex-prime minister of Portugal urged countries to give protection to “the most vulnerable” in the world in the face of the covid-19 pandemic. He also argued that the “vaccine is accessible to all people”. According to Guterres, “difficulties cannot be allowed to widen inequalities and it is necessary to prevent the (global) liquidity crisis from” becoming a new lost decade “.

“It is very important that the secretary general of the most important organization in the world addresses us, because it is a sign of openness that we have to take advantage of (in this pandemic moment),” said Amorim. For the former chancellor, the recent events in the United States, with the election of Joe Biden and the invasion of the Capitol, represent “the end of an era”. He added: “I don’t know if it was a Trump era or an era of American hegemony. But the end of an era. Fortunately, the reactionaries of the extreme right did not win, ”he concluded.

Former Brazilian presidents Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva and Dilma Rousseff attended the Puebla Group meeting. “Latin America definitely needs to find its way. We cannot stand between American and Chinese grandeur, in our smallness ”, said Lula (read on here).

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Economy

Argentina extends border closure with Brazil

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Opera Mundi – Argentina decided on Sunday (28) to extend the deadline for closing air and land borders with Brazil until March 12, extending the previous decree that determined that they should reopen as of this Monday (1st) ).

Argentine health authorities considered it necessary to maintain the blockade at the borders and a 50% reduction in flights between the two countries.

The country is also closed to foreigners from other neighboring countries and the United Kingdom. Only Argentineans or residents can enter.

According to the Minister of Health, Carla Vizzotti, the measure is taken “in a preventive manner until knowledge about the new Brazilian variant of the virus deepens”.

Brazil has been experiencing the worst moment of the covid-19 pandemic in recent weeks. The moving average of deaths in the last seven days broke a new record and reached 1,180. With 50,840 new diagnoses registered in one day, the number of cases in the country is already over 10.5 million.

Vaccination in Argentina

While seeing its neighbor in the worst scenario of the pandemic, Argentina is advancing in vaccination against covid-19. There are already more than 903 thousand doses applied.

This week, the Argentine laboratory Richmond announced a partnership with the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) to start producing the Sputnik V vaccine nationwide.

On the night of last Friday (26), Argentina received 96 thousand doses of the Sinopharm vaccine against covid-19. According to the Minister of Health, these doses have already started to be distributed on Saturday.

* With Sputnik

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