“The Latin American and Caribbean peoples cannot let themselves be manipulated. We have to be steadfast in our position to achieve the region’s integration,” said Ralph Gonsalves, prime minister of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines in his statement at the 19th Summit of Heads of State and Government of the Bolivarian Alternative for the Peoples of Our America-Peoples’ Trade Treaty (ALBA-TCP).
At the Miraflores Presidential Palace, Gonsalves described the role of ALBA-TCP as extraordinary.
“It is an integration movement of the highest quality benefiting the free and independent people across the Caribbean and Latin American civilization, and we cannot let societies be turned into laboratories,” he remarked.
Likewise, he pointed out the ALBA-TCP’s goal is the freedom of men and women. “That’s what the Battle of Carabobo was about. Many of us think that 200 years is a long time in the evolution of human civilization, but it’s not like that. We have achieved progress for over 70,000 years.”
In this vein, Gonsalves congratulated the Venezuelan people for the “200th anniversary of this epic confrontation. Two hundred years later, we are still fighting to consolidate and even extend our gains of freedom, independence, sovereignty and dignity.”
In this context, the Vincentian prime minister rejected the powerful governments’ meddling that seeks “to change people’s mind, and they want to get us away from collective action, and believe we have no sense of solidarity, because that is the way that imperialism wishes to keep us in subjection, to keep us atomized.”
Gonsalves said the regional integration bloc’s member countries have to make sure they are not possessed by a “brightness which blinds, but a brightness which illuminates, and the illumination can only come through solidarity and collective actions. That is why we are in ALBA-TCP. This integration movement is a very remarkable one […] in it we dissolve our individual strengths and weaknesses into a whole.”
“Only the future is ours to decipher. We are committed to the will of the people,” said Gonsalves.