President Charles De Gaulle of France received a cordial welcome at the first major stop of his South American tour, Caracas.
President Charles De Gaulle of France received a cordial welcome at the first major stop of his South American tour, Caracas. Crowds cheered him as he rode through the streets of the Venezuelan capital.
The General developed his theme of common political interests between France and Latin America and to an applauding Congress, he said France, with Latin America, believes in upholding the principle of sovereignty and non-interference from other countries, which the Congress took to mean independence from both of the world's big power blocs.
Shortly before he left for Bogota, Colombia, a communique was issued saying France and Venezuela intend to strengthen their economic and cultural links. In the political field, the communique was vague. It said France and Venezuela would work to diminish world tensions among Latin countries who share similar principles within the international organisations to which they belong.
In one instance, Venezuelan President Leoni spoke firmly in private talks about Venezuela's view that European nations, including France, should cut off trade with Cuba. He also said sharply that De Gaulle's expression of Latin brotherhood was all very well but more concrete steps by the French would be appreciated.
The conclusion following the visit was that the General had scored a personal success although the mission fell short of achieving total harmony.