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    XXII ALBA-TCP Summit: for unity and peace

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    Representatives of the Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of Our America-Peoples' Trade Treaty (ALBA-TCP) will meet again this Wednesday, in Havana, in the midst of a complicated regional scenario and an increasingly tense and complex.

    There are ten different countries, but with coincident aspirations, in the effort to complement efforts and seek what unites them, beyond the differences.

    Faced with common challenges, the XXII Summit of ALBA-TCP will reaffirm that this project founded 18 years ago by Commanders Fidel Castro and Hugo Chávez, remains committed to the integration, solidarity, peace and unity of the peoples of the continent.

    Fidel and Chávez became the promoters of regional cooperation and complementarity processes, when they devised this mechanism for political agreement, at a time when the United States was trying to impose Free Trade Agreements on the countries of the region.

    By virtue of the Havana agreement, ALBA sealed its link with the history of the new dawn in Latin America. The initiative arose in the context of the continental mobilizations against the Free Trade Area of ​​the Americas (FTAA) that failed plan for commercial and geopolitical domination designed by the US government.

    Reality shows that, during all these years, millions of Latin Americans and Caribbeans have benefited from the Bolivarian Alliance's programs in numerous sectors, especially health and education.

    In 2006, at the request of the then Bolivian President Evo Morales Ayma, this mechanism was enriched with the proposal of the Peoples' Trade Treaty (TCP), an instrument of solidarity and complementary exchange between countries, aimed at benefiting the peoples, in contrast to Free Trade Agreements that seek to increase the power and dominance of transnationals.

    Almost two decades after its birth, Latin America is experiencing the effects of an articulated oligarchic counteroffensive. The right tries to revive the neoliberal agenda, which in the most recent history of the continent has generated political instability and serious social problems.

    Economic wars, media campaigns, meddling in internal affairs, and the execution of destabilizing programs as part of the so-called Unconventional War, are today supported by external forces and national oligarchies in several Latin American countries.

    In the current circumstances, a strong right-wing counteroffensive is unfolding in Latin America and the Caribbean to overthrow progressive governments. The Latin American left is living a crucial hour. The challenge is not easy. Without unity, Latin America would have no future.

    In this complex regional scenario, Cuba will once again become the capital of Latin American integration, when it hosts the XXII ALBA-TCP Summit on December 14.

    Fidel and Chávez led the way. Two giants charted a course of struggle and resistance. It is up to today's leaders, together with their peoples, to continue flying the flag of optimism and hope, of solidarity and full integration.

    What should we know about ALBA-TCP?

    The Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of Our America - Peoples' Trade Treaty (ALBA-TCP), is an integration platform for the countries of Latin America and the Caribbean, which ponders solidarity, complementarity, justice and cooperation . It is a political, economic and social alliance that defends the independence, self-determination and identity of the peoples that make it up.

    It arose in Havana, on December 14, 2004, through the signing of a Joint Declaration and the Agreement for the Application of ALBA, by the historical leaders of Cuba, Commander in Chief Fidel Castro Ruz; and from Venezuela, Hugo Chávez Frías.

    From its beginnings, it proposed a development model with an emphasis on regional complementarity that would promote the development of all and strengthen cooperation.

    In April 2006, also in Havana, ALBA was enriched with the proposal of the People's Trade Treaty (TCP).Another important event occurred in 2012, when it was agreed to establish the Economic Area of ​​ALBA-TCP or ECOALBA-TCP.

    ALBA-TCP currently has ten full members: Antigua and Barbuda, Bolivia, Cuba, Dominica, Grenada, Nicaragua, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, and Venezuela.

    What are some of your milestones?

    • 4 million 989 thousand 400 literate people. Together with ALBA-TCP, three Latin American countries were declared “Territories Free of Illiteracy”: Venezuela (2005), Bolivia (2008) and Nicaragua (2009).

    • The Miracle Mission has restored sight for free to more than 6 million people.

    • As part of the Psychosocial Genetic Clinical Study of People with Disabilities, unprotected people were identified in six of the ALBA-TCP countries. Millions of consultations have been offered.

    • Thousands of young people from Latin America, the Caribbean and Africa have been trained as doctors with a deep social vocation and a high scientific, technical, ethical and humanistic preparation at the Latin American School of Medicine (ELAM), with offices in Cuba and Venezuela.

    • Several editions of the ALBA Sports Games have been held with the participation of more than 10,000 athletes.In 2005, Fidel and Chávez created PETROCARIBE, an oil alliance between some Caribbean countries and Venezuela.

    • ALBA has articulated as a bloc the provision of humanitarian aid to various countries in the region, such as Haiti, on the occasion of the earthquake that occurred on January 12, 2010.