Summit for Democracy: What is it and who wasn't invited?
The Summit for Democracy is the international convocation of the president of the United States, Joe Biden, to the leaders of more than 100 countries of the…
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One-hundred and ten countries responded to the call of the president of the United States, Joe Biden, and on Thursday, Dec. 9, as they met virtually at the Summit for Democracy — an initiative to debate ways to protect human rights and respond to the threats brought by authoritarian and corrupt governments around the world.
“Today, I'm hosting the first Summit for Democracy. We're bringing together leaders from over 100 governments, alongside activists, trade unionists, experts, and other members of civil society to lock arms and reaffirm our shared commitment to make our democracies better,” Biden said via Twitter.
Today, I'm hosting the first Summit for Democracy. We're bringing together leaders from over 100 governments, alongside activists, trade unionists, experts, and other members of civil society to lock arms and reaffirm our shared commitment to make our democracies better. pic.twitter.com/bQ2jyaHmmM— President Biden (@POTUS) December 9, 2021
This unprecedented meeting, which the president planned since he was a candidate, did not escape controversy. In this case, it arose from the countries that were not invited to the meeting.
China, Russia, Hungary, Turkey, Iran, North Korea, Saudi Arabia, Bangladesh, Morocco, Honduras, El Salvador, Guatemala, Nicaragua and Cuba (Venezuela was present with the so-called interim president Juan Guaidó) were the countries left out of the Summit for Democracy, and they have not kept silent.
For China, also angry with the Biden administration for the recent announcement of a diplomatic boycott of the Winter Olympics to be held in Beijing, there is no definitive model of democracy, and its government does not recognize Washington as the best example of a proper one. According to the Chinese government, which also resented the invitation made to Taiwan, the president of the United States is campaigning towards a new 'Cold War,' seeking to fuel an ideological confrontation and creating greater division.
According to Biden, the call did not seek to impose the idea that any of these democracies "is perfect or has all the answers," but rather seeks to make constructive criticism and concrete commitments to strengthen them.
The president opened the ceremony by highlighting his government's own achievements, such as the American Rescue Plan and bipartisan infrastructure bill, as well as advances in matters of racial justice and the forthcoming approval of the Build Back Better bill, which will greatly expand the social safety net.
Tune in as I deliver opening remarks at the virtual Summit for Democracy. https://t.co/rfh9mHQ07s— President Biden (@POTUS) December 9, 2021
Biden also called for joining efforts against authoritarian governments that continue to expand their influence in the world, seeking to increase division and stoke ideological polarization, making direct references to those excluded from the meeting.
Also of interest: Biden makes it clear to Putin what will happen if he invades Ukraine
Pending congressional approval, Biden admin is seeking funds of up to $224 million to carry out a program they have called Transparent and Accountable Governance.
According to Biden's statements, these resources will give the state and USAID the green light to support their “partners” working to defend democracy around the world.