"Spain needs a great national policy conceived, written and interpreted with a sense of State, not lost in petty matters"
"Spain must recover its Atlantic vocation without accepting double standards"
"We want for Latin America the same we want for Spain and Europe. We will not excuse there what we condemn here"
"The density of our relationship with Latin America is an unequivocal indicator of our political health as a country"
"Latin America abides by the paradigm of democracy, freedom and growth, even if there are exceptions"
Spain feels as part of Latin America, and that demands a commitment which "the Crown has always interpreted excellently"
"The Ibero-American Summit must serve to give new momentum to a seriously neglected cooperation program"
"The new Government has set to the task of restoring those essential assets. It won't be easy work"
FAES report It is not a partisan document but rather seeks to facilitate the 'union of the alike'
"We do not seek to serve as nothing save what we are: we are part of a country which cannot be explained without America"
Cádiz, 10.04.12.- José María Aznar, former Prime Minister of Spain and president of FAES, has declared that "Spain needs a great national policy conceived, written and interpreted with a sense of State, not lost in petty matters. A project of ambitions, hopes and common efforts. A new and reforming momentum, inheritor of the principles of Cadiz and underpinned on three basic pillars: the Nation, the Constitution and freedom". And added: "A Nation's sovereignty is neither diluted, nor divided, nor resigned, nor surrendered. The greatness of a Constitution which unites and equals us. The freedom of a society which, aware of being part of one of the greatest nations history has created, seeks and aspires to be, once again, one of the best democracies of the world."
Aznar made these statements during the launch and presentation of the FAES report "América Latina. Una agenda de libertad 2012" (also in English) at the Oratory of Saint Philip Neri, in Cadiz, where he shared the floor with the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Cooperation, José Manuel García-Margallo; the MP of the PP and director of the report, Miguel Ángel Cortés; the mayor of the city, Teófila Martínez; and the Secretary-General of FAES, Javier Zarzalejos.
During his presentation, Aznar remarked that "Spain must recover its Atlantic vocation, inconceivably disregarded in recent years, and it must do so without accepting the double standards set by some who, from Europe, have sought and still seek to apply them in their relations with Latin America". "We want for Latin America the same we want for Spain and Europe. We will not excuse there what we condemn here; we are not going to settle for something there which would not be enough here", he stated. In his opinion "The density of our relationship with Latin America is an unequivocal indicator of our political health as a country and of the clarity of the vision we hold of Spain's position in the world."
Aznar reminded the attendants that "for years, the Spanish people have had three great assets in Latin America". The first, "a process of democratic Transition widely acknowledged as exemplary and inspiring". The second, "the process of European integration, a project of unparalleled success throughout history, in which Spain played and active and main role". And finally, "the success of the policies implemented in Spain as of 1996, which generated employment, growth, opportunities for all and which turned Spain into the second investor worldwide and the first European one in Latin America, and Spanish companies into an example of investment and effectiveness".
Aznar regretted that "in recent years, those assets have been largely eroded". However, he pointed out that "the new Government has already set to the task of restoring those essential assets".
SPAIN, A PART OF LATIN AMERICA
During his presentation in Cadiz, Aznar asserted that "Spain feels as part of Latin America. Because it is so. And that belonging demands a serious, solid and responsible commitment, like the one it held for many years. A commitment which, by the way, the Crown has always interpreted excellently". In this sense, he reminded that "it will be around the Crown where the next Ibero-American Summit will be held, which will be celebrated in this same city in a few months. A Summit which must serve to give new momentum to a cooperation program which has been seriously neglected in recent years, executively speaking".
"América Latina. Una agenda de libertad 2012" is an updated and extended edition of the one published by FAES on 2007, about the situation and future of Latin America. Aznar explained that it is not a partisan text, but that it is a political document because it carries a political intention: "that of facilitating a politically efficient union around the principles of liberal democracy. That is what we call the 'union of the alike'".
The former Spanish Prime Minister has said that the report "is not a proposal from Spain for Latin America. It is a proposal made by Latin-Americans and Spaniards together in order to enable a common future of the same family". In this sense he stressed that "We do not seek to serve as nothing save what we are: we are part of a country which cannot be explained without America, the same as America cannot be explained or understood without Spain". Aznar further stated that "Latin America today abides by the paradigm of democracy, freedom and economic growth, even if there are exceptions".
Aznar advanced that, as was done with the previous edition, the report will be presented to heads of government and think tanks from many Latin-American countries and some European ones, as well as in the United States.