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UNASUR Celebrates Simon Bolivar's “Jamaica Letter”

Quito, September 9 (teleSUR-RHC)-- Two hundred years ago, South American independence leader Simon Bolivar wrote the “Jamaica Letter,” a visionary document, which speaks of South American and Caribbean integration and unity in their joint struggle against imperial powers for independence.

Historians from across the region came to the Union of South American Nations, or UNASUR headquarters in Quito, Ecuador to pay homage to one of the two original Spanish versions of the document and discuss its geopolitical significance in UNASUR’s Congress of History.    

"The union and the thriving of the region, the fight against any type of insurgent foreign influence, all these elements are related to the project of UNASUR.  This is what we are highlighting today in this emotional commemoration," Secretary General of UNASUR Ernesto Samper told teleSUR.        

The letter was present at the event, which was attended by historians who specialize in the history of South American liberation movements.     

"The Response of a South American to a Gentleman of the Island" was the title of the Jamaica Letter written by Bolivar when he was self exiled in Kingston following the fall of the Second Republic and was written to Englishman Henry Cullen. This original Spanish language version of the letter was discovered by Ecuadorean historian Almicar Varela in November 2014.       
Many leaders of Latin America's recent history have been influenced by the thoughts outlined by Bolivar in this letter, and it has influenced the ideology for UNASUR, as well as the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States and the Bolivarian Alliance for the People of Our Americas, among other regional organizations.  

"This is the dream of Bolivar, which is not just an abstract idea of brotherhood, of solidarity, of historical symbolism, but it is absolutely relevant to today, to the economy, production, to many aspects which are today necessary for the progress and prosperity of our nations of South America,” said Minister of Culture Guillaume Long.      

The Jamaica Letter, written by Simon Bolivar on September 6, 1815, is considered one of the most important historical documents of the region.  It has been taken for safekeeping to Ecuador's General Archive of the Nation.
Edited by Ivan Martínez
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