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Mexico, Venezuela Recall Ambassadors amid Dispute

Publication: Business Digest

Provider: AII Data Processing Ltd.

Date: November 15, 2005

Mexico, Venezuela Recall Ambassadors amid Dispute

El Universal - Venezuela,2001,El Aragueno Mexico and Venezuela recalled their ambassadors on November 14, 2005 after presidents of the two countries sparred over an U.S-backed proposal on regional free trade.

Venezuela Foreign Minister Ali Rodriguez announced the recall after Mexico threatened to withdraw its envoy if Caracas did not apologise for the sharp remarks President Hugo Chavez made towards Mexican leader Vicente Fox.

Shortly after that Mexico ordered the withdrawal of its ambassador to Caracas, Enrique Loaeza.

Tension between Fox and Chavez spilled over after the regional Summit of the Americas in Argentina, on November 4-5, 2005, where leaders failed to resolve differences over how to create a hemisphere-wide free trade zone. Fox defended the U.S.-backed proposal for a Free Trade Area of the Americas, while Chavez proclaimed the idea dead. Venezuela offered an alternative initiative named Bolivarian Alternative for Latin America and the Caribbean (ALBA).

Chavez also criticised the position of Colombia as "defending" the U.S. policy.

Mexico was the second largest investor in Venezuela, after the USA, in the last few years.

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