Thursday, 24 January, 2019

Peru opens Americas summit decrying corruption

Peru opens Americas summit decrying corruption Peru opens Americas summit decrying corruption
Melinda Barton | 15 April, 2018, 02:18

Vice President Mike Pence has arrived in Peru for a Latin American summit at which he's expected to push a tough line on Venezuela and point to the an ideal trading partner in the region.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will meet with U.S. Vice President Mike Pence on Saturday on the sidelines of the Summit of the Americas in Lima, Peru, Canadian officials confirmed Friday.

The U.S. vice president says Maduro has turned Venezuela into a dictatorship.

An economic collapse in Venezuela is driving about 100,000 people per month to flee the country controlled by socialist President Nicolas Maduro. - Pence defended the president while building support among USA allies for the joint strikes with Britain and France.

Pence was attending the Summit of the Americas on Friday before being whisked away from the gathering and to his hotel shortly before Trump's address to the nation.

The Trump administration is considering imposing an oil embargo on the OPEC nation, while Panama recently said it would pursue sanctions of its own _ the first Latin American nation do so _ by blacklisting dozens of Venezuelan officials from doing business in the Central American country.

Heritage Foundation senior policy analyst on Latin America and the Western Hemisphere Ana Quintana said Pence would seek to "continue the momentum" of United States policy on Venezuela. How ironic that today the US president is disfiguring the North-American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) with the argument that Mexico takes unfair advantage of the United States!

Richard Feinberg, a senior fellow in the Latin America Initiative at the Brookings Institution, said it would be hard for the United States to make a case to become the "preferential trading partner" as Trump seeks to upend trade agreements.

Senate Democrats are urging Vice President Mike Pence to use his trip to Lima to reset relations with a region where they say President Donald Trump's immigrant-bashing rhetoric is costing the USA influence. "If preferred means lowering trade barriers, Trump is the opposite of that".

But U.S. and Chinese trade will loom large over talks as a heated dispute between the world's two biggest economies continues to fan fears of a trade war.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has endorsed the USA -led military strike against Syria's government.

The vice president's visit comes as the Trump administration is embroiled in an escalating trade fight with China, seeking a renegotiated version of NAFTA and floating the possibility the USA could eventually rejoin the Trans-Pacific Partnership.

The president's recent tweets called on Mexico to halt "caravans" of migrants, many from Honduras, a message that Pence might be asked about in his discussions.

After opening the summit, Vizcarra then greeted heads of state on the steps of the government palace - the same spot where Kuczynski bid farewell to his staff after resigning less than one month before.