Organization of American States ..............................News Release


February 5, 1998

Guatemala has reiterated its appreciation for the support it had received from the Organization of American States (OAS) and member countries, in the process that led to a peace agreement in the Central American country.

Addressing the regular session of the OAS Permanent Council on Wednesday, Guatemala's new ambassador to the OAS, Alfonso Quiñonez Lemus, recalled that barely a year ago "by signing the agreement in question, we Guatemalans confirmed that we were opting for dialogue as the best way to settle political differences and, once and for all rejected the language of confrontation and recourse to armed violence as a viable tool for participation in a civilized society."

Moving on, Ambassador Quiñonez spoke about the efforts that the government led by President Arzú was putting into fighting corruption and poverty, as it was convinced that they worked against any fledgling effort to institutionalize democratic rule. "That explains our active participation in the work towards establishing and consolidating the Inter-American Council for Integral Development (CIDI),"" he added.

He also referred to the upcoming Sixth Inter-American Conference on Private International Law, which Guatemala is hosting. The government is committed to making that OAS specialized conference a resounding success, said the ambassador, who received a warm welcome from his colleagues in the Permanent Council.

The recently-appointed Ambassador Quiñonez previously served as minister-counselor at the Guatemalan Embassy to the United States for five years.

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