July 20, 2001




St. Kitts and Nevis' Ambassador Izben C. Williams today presented credentials to Secretary General CÚsar Gaviria of the Organization of American States, with reassurances that his government remains committed to the OAS and the issues with which the region grapples.

Ambassador Williams cited the Inter-American Democratic Charter among the pressing issues and interests his country will be pursuing. "We recognize it as a priority of the Organization," he said, noting other priorities such as OAS technical cooperation, natural disaster mitigation, human resource development and the Organization's fellowship program which, he said, "affords an opportunity for many of our young people to develop as part of our young, emerging cadre of trained people that we would need to help build our community."

On the matter of hemispheric security, Ambassador Williams spoke about the anti-narcotics efforts of the Inter-American Drug Abuse Control Commission (CICAD) and explained that "St. Kitts and Nevis has been doing and will continue to do all it [can] to enact legislation and to take other initiatives which demonstrate our commitment to make an impact on this process."

In his welcome, Mr. Gaviria said he looked forward to Dr. Williams' contributions as the OAS tackles democracy, institutional capacity-building in the member countries, trade and anti-narcotics issues and other issues. The Secretary General also stressed the importance of the OAS' multilateral approach as vital to development in the Hemisphere's countries.

Holding a doctorate in psychiatry from the University of the West Indies, Ambassador Williams has been a general practitioner and consultant psychiatrist to the St. Kitts and Nevis and Anguilla governments. He has also taught at the University of the West Indies, served with the Eastern Caribbean Central Bank, and was registrar at the University Hospital of the West Indies and at Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami, Florida.

Ambassador Williams represented St. Kitts and Nevis in CICAD's Group of Government Experts and is a member of several professional societies, among them the Caribbean Psychiatric Association, the Organization of Eastern Caribbean States Psychiatric Association and the American Psychiatric Association.

Dr. Izben Williams is married with two children and is also accredited to the White House.