Homer Menacho | Development of parliamentary dialogue mechanisms to issue joint work resolutions between the Government, civil society, and the business community.

Homer Menacho | Development of parliamentary dialogue mechanisms to issue joint work resolutions between the Government, civil society, and the business community.

Good afternoon, a fraternal greeting to all present. Well, Gabriela Lara left, I wanted to greet her and also thank her for the invitation; to the president also of the Global Peace Activists, to Mr. William Soto, to the panelists, to the ambassador of Israel in Panama, to Tommy from Texas (excuse me, he did not give me his card, the colleague here on the side, that's why I have his name), but greetings to all.

Well, the senator from Paraguay was so spontaneous, that he frees us a little from the tensions, and to be able to talk more about our environment, mainly from our country.

I think it was said in the previous dinner, two days ago, that this is the best environment where we can talk about social welfare, human rights, defense of Mother Earth; because here we are politicians, scientists, people, indigenous representation too, and I think that's why we come here. I believe that it should be one of the areas where we can speak with more sincerity about the protection of Mother Earth and World Peace.

I think we all have the same objective here, which is world peace, the defense of Mother Earth; and that I think we all come to be able ... if we can talk, give feedback to follow the path of struggle with the same goal that we all have.

That is why, in this space, I think we have to take out the political partisan and talk about common objectives, talk about objectives as a country and objectives like world diplomacy.

What is being done now in this 21st century? We now in my country are ... we have practically come out of a new Political Constitution of the State that we have approved in 2009, we are in process of a new Penal Code; that is, my part here was to see what resolutions can be taken between the central government, civil society, and the private entrepreneur.

In Bolivia, we are practically constantly in these dialogues. There are spaces and dialogues because we are just modifying laws, making new laws, in order to promote both the private entrepreneur as well as the right to life and the protection of the Earth by the indigenous people, the peoples ... We are a plurinational country , that's why we call it the Plurinational State, where we have 36 ethnic groups, 36 indigenous peoples.

Then we have the constant – constant spaces for dialogue, where we are the central government, departments, municipalities, and indigenous peoples.

Well, to begin, I think it's good to give some concepts about diplomacy; and we know very well that diplomacy is very important, first to avoid conflicts, to seek financing, so that there is multilateral and bilateral cooperation.

We now have a problem that, it is good to say, is very dangerous for peace in our country. I think that in the previous presentation I had in Paraguay, we talked about a referendum on February 21 to see if there was, if the president could re-postulate for five more years, because in our Political Constitution of the State says that you can only have their management and a re-postulation, which would be 10 years.

And in the previous presentation I had, we just said that it was dangerous for the democratic issue; because there are many people who believe in alternation, and when a person stays in power for a long time tends to corruption, because there is no alternation that the next government comes and oversees everything that has been done and continue.

So in my country now we have passed that referendum, won the "no" option; that is, that the Political Constitution of the State be respected, because they wanted to modify an article, precisely so that this can be done. And the internal danger that we have is just confrontation, because the country is practically divided: Some that do not want re-postulation and others that want President Evo Morales to continue running for the presidency. We have ... there are people (like myself) who think it is dangerous for democracy.

But I mention this because precisely from that comes what we should talk about, the need to discuss the problems that exist within our country, because we cannot ask outside what we do not do within our country: respect for the Constitution, respect to human rights, therefore, political; but above all, respect for democracy and the decision of the people. I think that is very important.

And we need to be honest with ourselves and see what we need as a country, and not as a political ideology of government, but as a country. To think that diplomacy has to open paths for us, open doors for us, both in the field of business, both in the field of human rights ...; seek the mediation of the other diplomats so that permanent and large conflicts can be resolved, such as the one that we Bolivians have with Chile, which is our exit to the sea, which is more than 150 years old. So ... and we have had problems just with those bilateral problems.

And here we are together to give our position. I believe that these problems are solved diplomatically and not with a strategy of aggression, as has been done. And here goes the call for attention also for my parliamentary colleagues, so that we have that culture of dialogue; because I believe that these international organizations, such as the OAS, the United Nations, Unasur, and several of us that are pledged to these organizations and these treaties, believe that the purpose is that: To resolve, mediate and find the solution to very long-standing problems that we have.

And that is why we are here. I just think that this is a space where there are ambassadors, there are politicians, there are people representing very strong institutions that help the different governments, but mainly ours that are still underdeveloped and that we need foreign investment.

That's why I repeat again, we in Bolivia have grown a lot, but with very little foreign investment; and diplomacy has to be a way to bring this foreign investment, to bring ... to solve the conflicts that we have bilaterally, and also to enforce human rights in our country (and in the world, right?), which is what we need, that respect.

Because our duties in everything, I think that in most Latin American countries we review them every day, but we have to claim our right; and that should be the other way around: respect our right. And I think that diplomacy is essential to this issue.

From there I want to reach a point, that I think that in several South American countries we are weakened in that, we have that shortcoming.

What I did want to share with you is my concern in the diplomatic part of the diplomats. I think that diplomats have to be career people, with experience, with a lot of knowledge of international politics (because there are international protocols that must be met), but mainly trained and knowledgeable to solve problems (which must be very difficult, because they are the image of the country abroad). There, the ambassador of Israel in Panama can tell us about it; that is, it is the image, the figure.

And it depends on the work of these diplomats, that we can open ways to be able to have relations between different countries or bilateral relations, or develop our culture, our way of life, because we have much coincidence mainly between neighboring countries; and I think we should do it this way and not as it is being done in several countries of South America, to put politicians (I am a politician), to put ambassadors, consuls politicians, who will have the same ideology as the government party. But I think we have to think more about diplomacy, how we can solve our problems with foreign cooperation. In the end we are countries ... several of us are brother countries, many of them have the condition of being able to help us in the condition that we are.

That is one of the things I wanted to share, because I believe that we should look not only for diplomats, but for people who forge peace.

And in many cases, in Latin American countries (I do not want to indicate one, but Latin Americans), that have an ideology of thought, seek or put people who are political and with the ideology of the government party, but not with knowledge, the ability to be able to solve international, bilateral problems, whether in the matter of trade, whether in matters of opening markets for our products, respecting where we are.

We have endorsed the signature as international treaties that we have to respect, so that the human rights of the people are respected, because sometimes they interpret them differently. Sometimes it is said that they are going over the rights of the authorities, for example, a political right, but normally it is those who are in the function of government who pass over the human rights of people, ordinary people; and that, the treaties are for that, to protect those people, to protect the indigenous nations, to protect the citizen of the country.

So I think that it has to go around that, following that line. First, we have a saying in our country: "each monkey in its segment,” and I think the diplomat, the one who studies to be a diplomat, has to be a representative, they have to be the representative of the country. Not only ... for example, I believe that in my country there are eight of twenty-some representatives who are of a political career, of a diplomatic career, and who are also politicians.

And I want this criticism to be based on the fact that it is a constructive criticism, not destructive, nor wanting to speak for my Government; but that all the governments have to look for the best people, the most capable people to be able to solve the problems, that there are many of us; both internally, imagine externally.

We are a country that has bilateral conflicts, so then we need people who propose (and as I said in a previous paper that I heard), we have to look for people who forge peace. And those peacemakers, I think that many of those who are here are of that idea and the good thing would be that we all think in the same way to protect both our Mother Earth (which is why we are here) and the human rights of the people, and mainly to ensure world peace.

Thank you very much.



Thank you very much, senator. Of the two presentations we have heard, I found one thing in common and it is to refer to Mother Earth; also in Hebrew there is this saying, adamah, and the importance of the land and the attachment as a mother, and the importance that it allows us to live, we live from the earth, from the water, from the food.

And nowadays talking about bilateral or multilateral conflicts, today there is the technology to face the challenges that everyone faces, be they water management challenges, and be they food security challenges.

The land called in the Bible "land of milk and honey" turns out that it converts a land of milk and honey only if you work it, and work it hard; and this knowledge and experiences that we have acquired, of converting it to a land of milk and honey in the middle of the desert, we are sharing this with many countries of the world, and this is one of the tools to reach peace.