Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa received on Monday the rotatory presidency of the Union of South American Nations (Unasur) from Chilean president Michelle Bachelet.
During the ceremony held in San Agustin Convent in Quito, with the attendance of the representatives from the 12 member countries of the regional bloc, Correa said that Unasur is "a political option" which can include the achievements from the Common Market of the South and the Andean Community of Nations.
Correa also said that the Unasur has the challenges of launching projects like the Bank of the South, the creation of a common reserve fund and a common monetary system, as well as the creation of new policies to make a massive restructuring of the external debt that the Unasur countries have.
Correa also proposed to create an observation commission for the electoral process in the region at the time he said the region "does not need foreign sponsor or observers" like the European Union.
When criticizing the work of the media at regional level, Correa proposed the creation of an "analysis and reflection center" to achieve "free, independent and critic media."
Correa also called on the Unasur member countries to demand the "unconditional" restitution in power of ousted Honduran President Manuel Zelaya at the time he regretted the political instability in that country.
Meanwhile, Chilean President Michelle Bachelet during the ceremony mentioned the Unasur achievements during the time of her presidency, for example, the creation of the South American councils of Defense, Health and Energy.
Bachelet also said that the Unasur will not recognize the de facto government in Honduras.
Colombian President Alvaro Uibe was the only Unasur member president who did not attend the summit and appointed his foreign vice minister as representative, due to the diplomatic impasses his country has with Venezuela and Ecuador.
Unasur was set up in 2008, by Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile ,Colombia, Ecuador, Guyana, Paraguay, Peru, Surinam, Uruguay and Venezuela.