Hugo Chávez Frías addressed the plenary session on behalf of the Latin America and Caribbean Group, from where he sent greetings with to Fidel with a Latin American, Martí and Bolívar heart and for whom he requested a round of applause as evidence of the fraternal appreciation of everyone.
He called to the attention of those present that the 14th Summit was taking place in revolutionary Cuba and under the leadership of Fidel, “an example of dignity and resistance against imperialism” while equally acknowledging the leadership and history of Raúl Castro, acting president of the Movement and first vice president of the Cuban Councils of State and Ministers. Chávez also expressed his gratitude and congratulations for the welcoming and warm hospitality of the Cuban people and government, and his conviction that Cuba would be successful in the difficult task of heading the NAM presidency. After congratulating Malaysia and its Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi on the success of its mandate at the head of the political grouping in the last three years, he emphasized that Venezuela is at Cuba ’s orders in terms of support for this new presidency.
Evoking the terrible world situation, he greeted the brothers and sisters of Asia, Africa and Europe . “You who are visiting this ‘Our Caribbean,’ this Latin America , like your nations colonized, overwhelmed and massacred over centuries.
“In Our America,” he explained, “the independence processes began centuries ago, and we must always recall – in order not to lose our roots – those first indigenous rebellions and, precisely, one of their representatives, Evo Morales is here as a president, because he has resuscitated the indigenous people.” Chávez emphasized: “In the name of civilization and discovery the colonizers committed genocide against our peoples, masking it with that thesis of civilization.
“Tupac Katari, one of the massacred indigenous peoples, stated then: ‘I will die today, but I will come back made into millions. I will die today, but some day I will come back made into millions,’ and that is what is happening today in Latin America .”
Chavez affirmed that we are right at the bicentenary of our independence when that occurred; the independent republics were born in Our America, bound together then with blood and even with the love of their original peoples for mother Africa, for Europe, but when that occurred in 1810,1811, 1825, there was no kind of relationship with Asia or Africa. The years went by, he recalled, and the 20th century arrived and the phenomenon was inverted; Africa rose up, Asia rose up and from that independence movement emerged leaders like Nasser, Sukarno, Tito, like those of ours at the time, and later founded the Non-Aligned Movement. Fidel was already here and saw this movement born.
The Bolivarian leader noted that Latin America was almost entirely under the imperialist yoke and the Cuban government was the only one able to survive and project itself toward this future of today in the 21st century. He went on to ask what would have become of our region if the U.S. government had not severed the liberation movement, nationalist and revolutionary governments in Guatemala , the Dominican Republic , Brazil and Chile .
“That is our reality,” he said, “Raúl and Fidel have already exposed it and I am exposing it, the U.S. government is still making plans against the governments of Cuba , Venezuela and others.”
Lamentably, he added, with the exception of Cuba , Latin America was unable to accompany the emergence of the NAM . “Today, 200 years after our independence, 50 after Bandung , the Movement is in a new stage and, for that reason, we are here with so much passion at his meeting.”
Finally, he called for “the construction of new world among all of us”, which is really possible.
“Let us join forces to push the sun in this new dawn… because I believe that it is possible for us now to create a world where no one country rules, nor one world gendarme, nor war nor cannons nor bayonets, but in which a world of love, peace and solidarity reigns.”
“Either we succeed in turning the world around and humanizing it, or humanity will be in danger.”
“In this Summit that begins under the presidency of Cuba, rebellious as always, dignified as always, who represents all of us under the leadership of Fidel Castro, we can attain this because, as the poet Mario Benedetti said: ‘With its hard hope, the South also exists.”