Colombia withdraws from USAN: what comes next?

After the temporary withdrawal in April, Carlos Holmes Trujillo announces that the measure will be final and there is no going back

Colombia withdraws from USAN: what comes next?

Foreign Minister Carlos Holmes Trujillo officially announced the withdrawal of Colombia from USAN. During his presidential campaign, the now president Ivan Duque had announced that Colombia would retire because, according to him, the organization functions as an accomplice to the government of Nicolás Maduro in Venezuela. Thus, with the withdrawal of Colombia it intends to give a message of denunciation of the organism, which it considers an accomplice of the dictatorship in Venezuela, and of defense of democracy in Latin America.

Leer en español: Colombia se retira de la UNASUR: ¿ahora qué viene?

The Union of South American Nations USAN was founded in 2008 as an effort to build a Latin American identity that pursues common goals. On May 23 of that year, the consensual treaty of USAN was signed in the city of Brasilia, and such treaty entered into force in 2011. Colombia was one of the last nations to join the international organization of South American Nations and, after if it had suspended its USAN membership in April of this year, it is now definitively withdrawn.

Read also: USAN: Organism that disintegrates little by little

In April the countries of Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Peru and Paraguay had also announced their temporary withdrawal, which has generated an atmosphere of doubt and weakening of the organization. Professor Mauricio Jaramillo, international analyst at Universidad del Rosario, for the Semana magazine, says that what made USAN begin to show signs of exhaustion and lack of effectiveness were two things: "the vacuum in the general secretariat and Venezuela" . Since the departure of former President Ernesto Samper as general secretary, it has not been possible to reach a consensus on his replacement.

According to Jaramillo, the ideological differences that have not allowed the choice of secretary general have weakened the organization and this gap, among other things, was one of the reasons for the countries mentioned to have temporarily suspended their contribution to the organization. On the other hand, he says, "Venezuela takes away USAN's credibility." The lack of prestige and the ineffectiveness of USAN have unchained that governments of different people wonder if it is worth paying their membership.

Thus, according to the foreign minister, the withdrawal of Colombia from the USAN is a political decision that has no reverse and that aims to confront the organization, which the new government conceives as "a silent accomplice of the dictatorship of Venezuela." He also affirmed that other countries will follow the example of Colombia, making clearer, with this, the weakening environment of the organism that was founded, at first, in a context in which the Latin American left was in power and that sought a regional integration.
LatinAmerican Post | Juliana Rodríguez Pabón
Translated from "Colombia se retira de la UNASUR: ¿ahora qué viene?"
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