Colombian presidential hopeful Antanas Mockus, said in an interview yesterday that, if he is elected, he would seek to normalize trade with Venezuela and use diplomatic channels to diffuse tensions between the two Andean countries, which have intensified in recent years.

President Porfirio Lobo confirmed today that he was invited to the EU-Latin American summit scheduled to be held on May 18 in Madrid, but that he would only attend the EU-Central American meeting.

Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin is expected to arrive today for the first time to Caracas, where he has scheduled meetings with Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez and Bolivian President Evo Morales. The agenda will focus on furthering their cooperation on energy, finance and defense, among other areas.

Former Honduran President Manuel Zelaya has accepted an invitation to head Petrocaribe’s newly formed political council, Venezuelan foreign minister Nicolás Maduro announced on Saturday.


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