Delcy Rodríguez followed through on her promise to attend the Mercosur’s meeting between despite not being invited. The trading bloc retaliated by leaving her alone in the room. She then took to Twitter to express her rage.
Venezuelan Foreign Minister Delcy Rodríguez probably wasn’t expecting the warmest of welcomes at the Argentine Foreign Ministry’s Mercosur meeting today after announcing she would attend, despite being invited due to the suspension of her country’s rights as a full member of the trading bloc.
That being said, Venezuela’s most important diplomat probably wasn’t expecting her counterparts to get up from their chairs and leave at the very moment she entered the room joined by her Bolivian equivilant David Choquehuanca, but that is exactly what happened.
To be fair, Paraguayan Foreign Minister did say yesterday that “neither Delcy Rodríguez nor Venezuela” were invited to the meeting. A perfect new chapter for this succession of events that is starting to feel more like a teenage romcom than an international diplomatic conflict.
True to form, Rodríguez took to Twitter claiming that “the Foreign Ministers of the ‘Triple Alliance’ conspired against Venezuela and the Mercosur by refusing to host conversations with Bolivia and Venezuela.”
Moreover, when speaking to press outside the San Martín Palace, Rodríguez asserted that she was “attacked by Argentine security forces.” She didn’t provide any evidence to support her claims.
“We have been reporting political and ideological intolerance, not accepting those who are different, trying to impose their own views,” she said.
Meanwhile, Brazilian Foreign Minister Jose Serra published in his own Twitter account a picture of the actual meeting, which ended up happening in a different room than the one where it was originally scheduled.
Prior to the conflict, Argentine Foreign Minister Susana Malcorra held a bilateral meeting with Rodríguez, in an attempt to lower the tenor of the controversy. The meeting clearly go as successfully as planned.
Rodríguez will take advantage of her afternoon in the country to meet with Deputies of the Victory Front (FpV) and to pay a visit to the Instituto Patria (Patria Institute) — a sort of Kirchnerite think tank — where she will partake in a debate with ” Argentine political, social and popular movements who support the Bolivarian people and its government.”
On December 1st the bloc’s founding members officially explained they had suspended Venezuela’s rights as a member because the country had not met the last deadline it had for complying with the Mercosur’s requirements to put the trade bloc’s “charter in full effect” — a crucial step in becoming a full member, according to what a bloc source who preferred to remain in anonymity told different outlets.
Venezuela was meant to be serving as the bloc’s leading member since July, but Brazil and Paraguay prevented that from happening, arguing the political, economic and social crisis the country is going through makes it unfit to assume the leadership role.
Unsurprisingly, Venezuela challenged the decision. Also via Twitter, Rodríguez announced her country would “legitimately continue exercising the Mercosur’s presidency” in accordance to the bloc’s rulebook, which establishes the baton rotates every semester in alphabetical order. Going further, she informed the international community that her country activated the bloc’s mechanism to solve disputes due to the “aggression and harassment” it had been suffering.
The first formal mediation linked to this “mechanism” will take place tomorrow in Montevideo, Uruguay, where all the bloc’s foreign ministers will sit down at the same table in an attempt to start hashing out their issues.