Twelve political leaders from Latin America and the Caribbean, as well as Spanish King Felipe VI and several other political personalities from around the world will be attending Gabriel Boric’s inauguration on Friday, Mar. 11. The president-elect has also extended some of his invitations to a few left-leaning political figures and candidates from Colombia, Peru, Uruguay, and Spain. He believes their presence will be valuable in forming future coalitions.
In an official document issued by President-elect Gabriel Boric’s press team, the list of heads of state and government who will be present at the inauguration was confirmed. It includes President Pedro Castillo of Peru, President Mario Abdo of Paraguay, President Alberto Fernández of Argentina, President Luis Lacalle Pou of Uruguay, President Guillermo Lasso of Ecuador, President Luis Alberto Arce of Bolivia, President Luis Abinader of the Dominican Republic, First Lady of México Beatriz Gutiérrez Müller (who will be representing her husband President Manuel López Obrador), Prime Minister Gilmar Pisas of Curaçao, Prime Minister Mark Phillips of Guyana, Vice President Salvador Nasralla Salum of Honduras, and Prime Minister Ariel Henry of Haiti.
Attendees will also be joined by King Felipe VI of Spain, Vice Prime Minister of Ireland Leo Varadkar, Japanese Foreign Affairs Minister Kiyoshi Odawara, President of the Moroccan House of Representatives Rachid Talbi, and Palestinian Minister of Tourism and Archaeology Rula Maayah.
In a statement released by the White House on Mar. 8, President Joe Biden also announced that he will be sending a delegation to attend the inauguration. Isabella Casillas Guzman, head of the U.S. Small Business Administration, will be their lead representative. Although there had been rumors that Vice President Kamala Harris might be attending, it is not the case as she is currently in Eastern Europe.
Boric will be receiving bilateral visits from each one of the attending leaders throughout the day on Thursday, Mar. 10, and Friday, Mar. 11.
President Jair Bolsonaro of Brazil declined the invitation due to his ideological disagreements with Boric and will be sending Brazil’s vice president, Hamilton Mourão, instead. President Iván Duque of Colombia will not take part in the ceremony either due to the proximity of Colombia’s presidential primaries, which are set to take place on Mar. 13.
Boric’s personal invitations
Boric also has 26 invitations available to send out to various public figures of his choice. Among his other guests, there will be Colombian presidential candidate Gustavo Petro from the center-left coalition Historical Pact. A delegation or representative of the left-wing Uruguayan Board Front coalition will also be attending. Leader of the Brazilian Worker’s Party (PT) Luiz Inácio “Lula” da Silva, who will probably be running in the 2022 presidential election was also invited, but declined to attend. Spanish parliamentarian and leader of left-leaning party Más País, Íñigo Errejón, who is a close ally of Boric’s, has expressed regret at not being able to make it due to his need to attend the plenary session of the Spanish Congress of Deputies. A few Chilean regional leaders who are politically close to Boric have also been asked to attend.
During an interview with the BBC, Boric mentioned that if some of these Latin American candidates were to prevail in their respective elections, then ‘’a tremendously interesting axis can be put together.’’ He also said that he hopes to be able to work closely with Petro, Arce, and Lula in the future, as he believes that their experience could be extremely valuable to him as a leader.
However, some of the activities on the Inauguration Day program will be exclusively reserved to heads of state or delegations, so as not to cause friction in the cases where both the incumbent leaders themselves and their political rivals have been convened.
Stephanie Iancu just graduated with a bachelor’s degree in International Relations and she is aiming to go on and earn a postgraduate degree in Journalism. Her main areas of interest are politics, women’s rights, human rights and culture. She is currently taking a gap year and staying in New York while interning at Chile Today.