Region backs Venezuela in emergency summits

Emergency summits of the Organisation of American States (OAS), the Union of South American Nations (UNASUR) and the Bolivarian Alliance of Our Americas (ALBA) have rejected US attacks on Venezuela and offered the South American nation support.

TeleSUR English reported that a large majority of delegates at an emergency OAS meeting expressed concern about US President Barack Obama's March 9 “executive order” declaring Venezuela a threat and “national emergency”.

The OAS includes all nations in the hemisphere except Cuba and was established by the US in the 1960s to counter the influence of the Cuban revolution.

It came after an emergency ALBA meeting held in Caracas on March 17, in which the heads of state of the 11 ALBA nations expressed solidarity and "unconditional support" for Venezuela. The meeting called on the U.S. to "immediately cease its harassment and aggression against the government and people of Venezuela."

ALBA is an anti-imperialist bloc that promotes trade based on cooperation and solidarity rather than competition that was first formed in 2004 by Venezuela and Cuba.

On March 14, an emergency UNASUR summit also expressed strong backing for Venezuela. After the meeting of UNASUR foreign ministers, UNASUR Secretary General Ernesto Samper read out a statement that said: “The member states of UNASUR reject the executive order approved by the United States government which declares Venezuela a threat to national security.”

UNASUR unites 12 nations in South America, and was founded in 2008 in Brazil to promote regional integration.

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