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Uruguayan FM misses MERCOSUR summit due to ailment

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Uruguayan FM misses MERCOSUR summit due to ailment

Montevideo, Dec 6 (Prensa Latina) Uruguayan Foreign Minister Francisco Bustillo was hospitalized due to health problems during the day of the Southern Common Market (MERCOSUR) Summit, ongoing in this capital.

Bustillo headed Monday’s meeting of the Group’s foreign ministers, marked by the disagreement caused by Uruguay’s decision to seek accession to the Trans-Pacific Partnership.

This issue caused a clash of positions with the counterparts of the bloc, particularly, Argentinian Santiago Cafiero and Paraguayan Julio Arriola.

Cafiero said that if Uruguay concludes its projected free trade agreement with China, it will have to choose between the market of that Asian country and MERCOSUR, which also includes Brazil.

Deputy Foreign Minister Carolina Ache, who escorted President Luis Lacalle Pou to his arrival here at the Parque Hotel building, headquarters of the bloc and venue of the summit, replaced the absence of the Uruguayan foreign minister.

Lacalle Pou will welcome Argentina’s President Alberto Fernández and Paraguay’s Mario Abdo.

He will also welcome Brazil’s Vice President Hamilton Mourao and Bolivia’s Foreign Minister Rogelio Mayta, whose country is associated with MERCOSUR.

At this summit, Uruguay will hand over the pro tempore presidency of the bloc to Argentina.

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