Media Center

Press Release


  June 30, 2003

Nantucket, Massachusetts- More than 30 congressional representatives from Venezuela and the United States began today a three-day meeting with a broad discussion on how to confront, at the parliamentary level, the problem of poverty in Venezuela.

“I think we are all in agreement that there are many areas of consensus on this issue of such priority for our country,” stated Congressman Pedro Diaz Blum of the Proyecto Venezuela party. “We hope to return to Caracas with some concrete ideas for implementation in the short, medium and long term,” he added.

The Boston Group, which is holding its second annual meeting, is a binational Venezuela-United States parliamentary forum, created to strengthen cooperation between both nations’ Congresses. The Organization of American States (OAS) is supporting the initiative, through its Unit for the Promotion of Democracy.

“The idea is to create a space for discussion outside of the country’s daily politics, which allows for the exchange of ideas in an environment of tolerance and mutual respect that rises above the partisan discussions,” said Venezuelan Congressman Calixto Ortega of the Movimiento V Republica party.

Rep. William Delahunt, Massachusetts Democrat, stated, “Our participation has to do with sharing our own experience, how we as Democrats and Republicans, conservatives and liberals, can disagree but at the same time advance towards a concrete, common agenda which benefits the country.”

For his part, Rep. Cass Ballenger, North Carolina Republican, said, “To my way of thinking, the best way to accomplish results is to simply sit down to work, put the cards on the table and look for common solutions to problems.”

Reference: E-123/03