Ukraine Reaches Out to New Countries

1 min read

Ukraine President Zelensky is on a diplomatic offensive to win over Latin American countries, Reuters reports. A new diplomatic opportunity is opening up to him: while Latin America cannot afford to bankroll Ukraine the way Europe and the US are, it can add to a growing coalition in the UN taking Ukraine’s side.

The European Union’s Presidency, a mostly symbolic appointment, rotates every six months. Following Sweden in the first half of 2022, Spain’s Prime Minister now takes the role.

Speaking on Friday on the eve of a visit by Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez as he kicks off the six-month rotating presidency, Zelenskiy said several unspecified countries had blocked an invitation extended to him by Sanchez to take part in an EU-Latin American summit in Brussels on July 17-18.

“We have a peace formula, and Pedro has supported us a lot. He has a constant dialogue with Latin America and they listen to him, it’s a fact. But I’ll say frankly that some Latin American countries are blocking the decision and this invitation,” he said in remarks from Kyiv aired by state broadcaster TVE.

Spain’s colonial empire was one of the largest in history, the first that can be described as truly global where “the sun never set”. Following a loss of status in the late 17th and 18th century, Spain was occupied by Napoleon in the early 1800s. Combining the ideas of the American and French Revolutions, Latin American countries began declaring independence in the 1820s. The United States conquered and liberated the last vestiges of the Spanish Empire in the 1898 War, notably Cuba and Puerto Rico.

While Spain does not have the influence it used to in Latin America, it still maintains close ties with its fellow Spanish speaking countries. Ukraine faces difficulties in reaching out to Latin America, where many political groups are wary of NATO and American influence. In fact, almost all of Latin America was governed by Left Wing governments at the start of 2023.

Cuba and Nicaragua are the most die hard pro-Russian states. Venezuela and Bolivia are also heavily anti-American, and Brazil has accused the United States of perpetuating the war by giving Ukraine weapons. Even with Spain’s presidency, Zelensky will have difficulties making inroads in Latin America, which also has a tradition of broad neutrality in overseas wars.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Latest from Blog