The member countries of the Forum for the Progress of South America (Prosur) on Thursday approved the creation of a commission to make proposals to coordinate the reopening of their borders, closed due to the coronavirus pandemic.
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The foreign ministers of the nine member countries of this regional organization – Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Paraguay, Peru and Uruguay – decided on this creation during an online meeting.
The commission, made up of representatives of the Ministries of Foreign Affairs and of the Interior of each of the member countries, will have ten days to present measures intended to facilitate the reopening of the borders, indicated Andrés Allamand, chief of diplomacy of Chile, country who occupies the rotating president of the organization.
“Chile will propose that this opening requires the passport and a negative PCR test, but it is very important that the countries coordinate and establish concrete mechanisms,” Allamand told reporters in Santiago.
Created in 2019, the Prosur, formed by countries ruled by right-wing governments, seeks to replace the moribund Union of South American Nations (Unasur).
The latter was created in 2008 at the initiative of the late Venezuelan Hugo Chavez (1999-2013) and his Brazilian counterpart at the time, Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, two left-wing presidents.
Latin America is hit hard by the coronavirus, with more than 267,000 deaths and nearly 7 million confirmed cases. The vast majority of borders in South America have been closed since March.