Arab News –  Venezuelan Ambassador Joseba Achutegui stressed on Tuesday that South American and Arab countries’ cooperation is not limited to oil but extends to various fields that include economics, politics, society and culture.
“The ties binding South American countries and the Arab world are consistent with the traditional policies of developing countries,” a report quoted the envoy as saying.
The envoy made the statement to the press in the run-up to the 4th Arab-South American Countries, better known by its Portuguese and Spanish acronym ASPA, now being held in the Saudi capital.
Ambassador Achutegui said that the presence of developing nations in decision-making bodies is one of the most important reforms in the United Nations.
Other reforms include respect for pluralism and international law, reduction of poverty and the proliferation of nuclear arms, and support for negotiations to establish a Palestinian state.
He said that stakeholders look forward to meaningful results of the ASPA summit during which an open and friendly dialogue is expected to tackle issues of common interest such as trade, investment, economics and politics.
It’s important, he said, to have the same approach as was adopted during the first summit in 2005 in Brazil and pursued further in 2009 in Doha, Qatar, and 2012 in Lima, Peru.
“During those summits, dynamic action plans were drawn up with upbeat and clear objectives,” Ambassador Achutegui was quoted as saying.
He said that Venezuela attaches great importance to its unique and brotherly relations with Arab countries and is eager to find new ways that would help further in strengthening its ties with them.
He noted that South American countries’ involvement with a number of Arabic cultural traits goes a long time back to the Iberian rule in the 15th century.
As a result, he said: “there are common denominators in cultural aspects between South American countries and their Arabian counterparts.”
“These include language, basic dishes and values that link South American countries and the Arab world,” the Venezuelan envoy said.
He exuded optimism by saying that “as we move in advancing development in our respective countries based on the principles of peaceful dialogue and not to the exclusion of other parties and mutual respect for the law, the progress that we have attained will strengthen our society and economy.”

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