Ecuador: Correa will not attend Summit of the Americas

Correa skips Summit of the Americas in protest for Cuba’s absence and Holy Week is celebrated across the country.

Ecuador will not attend Summit of the Americas in support of Cuba

Ecuadorean President Rafael Correa will not attend to this month’s Summit of the Americas in Colombia to protest against Cuba’s absence, he told the summit’s host on April 2.

Correa declined the invitation to the summit to express his disagreement over the decision not to invite Cuba to the summit.

The Ecuadorian president is the first of 34 invited regional presidents to decline to attend the summit of the continent’s leaders, taking place in Cartagena, Colombia on April 14-15. US President Barack Obama is among the hemispheric leaders expected to attend the event.

The summit, which brings together the heads of state of 34 North and Latin American countries to discuss matters of regional interest, has been criticised for US’ strong influence over the discussed topics during the event.

US government says Cuba should not be allowed to attend as it is not a member of the Organisation of American States (OAS) as the organisation’s requirements are that all its members are proclaimed as ‘democracies.’

Despite the fact that Cuba has not participated in the OAS since 1962, the country claimed expressed a desire to attend the event during last year’s summit in Trinidad and Tobago.

Easter is celebrated in Ecuador

 Several religious activities took place across Ecuador’s major cities during the Easter weekend. Ecuadorians flooded the streets with processions, crucifixes and re-enactments of Jesus Christ’s death and resurrection, according to Christian tradition.

In Quito, the most popular event is the ‘Jesus del Gran Poder’ procession, which this year was attended by 200,000 devotees this year. The parade took place in Quito’s old town.

Additional to the religious celebration, Ecuadorians celebrate Holy Week as a great opportunity to get together with relatives and friends. One of the most popular gastronomic traditions is the ‘fanesca,’ a hearty soup made of vegetables, corn and fish which is shared among families during the Holy Week.