The Peruvian President, Francisco Morales Bermudez, arrived in Venezuela on Friday (10 December) at the start of a four day visit.
The Peruvian President, Francisco Morales Bermudez, arrived in Venezuela on Friday (10 December) at the start of a four day visit. His arrival was seen by some official sources as a potential means for the revitalisation of the Andean Pact.
SYNOPSIS: Portraits of the two countries' Presidents decorated the airport buildings as General Morales Bermudez arrived in the Venezuelan capital, Caracas. The Venezuelan President, Carlos Andres Perez, was at the airport to greet the Peruvian leader. The two men are expected to sign an agreement, improving relations between their countries. Officials also said that the Presidents would be seeking ways of creating what was called "political equilibrium" between Peru and Venezuela.
Newspaper reports have estimated that over 30,000 Peruvians are living in Venezuela and President Morales Bermudez is expected to meet with immigrant representatives. Relations between the two countries were strained earlier this year when a number of Peruvian army officers were given refugee at the Venezuelan embassy in Peru in October. The men were later given safe conduct to fly to Caracas. But now there are reports that the officers have been asked to leave Venezuela by the government because of the Peruvian President's visit.
Good relations between Peru and Venezuela are important if the Andean Pact is to be revitalised. Under the "Cartagena Agreement" signed in 1969, the governments of Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador and Peru set up an Andean Common Market. Venezuela joined the group as a full member in February 1973. The agreement called for the abolition of all internal custom tariffs between the member countries by 1980. Peru had been trying to promote trade within the group, but disagreements have caused some delay. However, the Peruvian leader is reportedly keen to bring the six countries back together again.