Havana, Cuba_ The Cuban Minister of Foreign Affairs, Bruno Rodriguez, opened the VIII Extraordinary Meeting of the AEC Ministerial Council, Prensa Latina reported.

In his speech, Rodriguez highlighted the complex scenario for the region and the world in which the meeting takes place and mentioned among other threats to the area's development, the effect of climate change especially for island nations of the Caribbean and the counteroffensive against progressive governments in the region.

He also expressed the need to strengthen Latin America and the Caribbean as a zone of peace, in line with the issued declaration of the Second Summit of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States, held in Cuba in 2014, an agreement which is an exemplary and practical guide of conduct to ensure the unity, harmony, stability and peace in the region, he said.

The Cuban minister said the AEC experienced a strengthening over the past four years, thanks to the contribution of its 25 member states and full cooperation of partners, as well as from the observer countries and organizations involved in this integration mechanism.

He said the AEC will continue to work in order to promote development, peace, survival and welfare of the peoples of the area.

This Friday the foreign ministers of the ACS will evaluate the documents negotiated by senior officials yesterday in a meeting that was developed under a broad spirit of negotiation.

Tomorrow it will be held in the Palace of the Revolution the segment of Heads of State and Governments of the member nations of the Association.

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