U.N. General Assembly President Miguel D'Escoto Brockmann, who has been critical of the United States' policy in Latin America, called the recent G-20 economic summit "a failure" because of what he said was a focus on wealthy nations at the expense of the developing world.
D'Escoto criticized the G-20 on Tuesday as he laid out the United Nations' plans for a new global summit, to be held June 1-3 at U.N. headquarters with agenda items including a new world economic order and the option of dropping the U.S. dollar as the international reserve currency.
"The G-20 meeting was pretty much a failure, no matter how you slice it," D'Escoto, a Socialist former Nicaraguan foreign minister, said at a media briefing. He intends to send out invitations to the new summit to the leaders of all 192 U.N. member states.
He said that the members of the G-20 have neglected to allocate $2 trillion to $3 trillion needed in the developing world, and many countries have lost their trust in the U.S. dollar as the international reserve currency.
President Obama initially struggled early this month at the G-20 summit to win the other industrialized nations over to the United States' efforts to bolster financial regulations and increase stimulus spending. The meeting, however, concluded with an agreement to renounce protectionism and pledge $250 billion in trade finance over the next two years — a key measure to help struggling developing countries.
"Overall, I am pleased with the product and I will leave it with others to determine whether me and my team had anything to do with that," Obama said at the time. He hailed agreements at the meeting as a "turning point in our pursuit of global economic recovery."
Such claims of progress were dismissed Tuesday by D’Escoto, who linked the global economic crisis to the war in Iraq and said that the whole world is now paying for the reckless decision of the United States to finance the war.
He announced that over the coming weeks he will travel to Russia, Latin American and European countries to garner support for the creation of what he called a new global economic architecture that would "try to restructure the world financial system" and to ensure "good governance."
His travels begin with a trip to Venezuela to meet with the government of Hugo Chavez before continuing on to Bolivia to confer with Socialist President Evo Morales and to Cuba, home of D’Escoto’s close friend Fidel Castro. There, he will participate in a meeting of the so-called G-77, a bloc of nations that includes China and developing countries that often criticize Western policy.
Despite criticizing the West on Tuesday, D’Escoto also praised Obama for his oratory skills and an inclusive foreign policy.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.