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Inter-American
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Sec. for Legal Affairs

 

Organization of American States

 

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The Committee
The First meeting of the Committee for the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Persons with Disabilities, was held on February 28 and March 1, 2007 in Panama City, Panama. This First meeting convened in accordance with a mandate included in the Inter-American Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Persons with Disabilities, and it was reaffirmed by the General Assembly in its resolution [AG/RES.2167 (XXXVI-O/06)].

The Inter-American Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Persons with Disabilities, adopted in Guatemala on June 7, 1999, during the Twenty-Ninth Regular Session of the General Assembly of the Organization, entered into force on September 14, 2001. Currently 17 member States have ratified the Convention. Article VI of the Convention provides that, to follow up on the commitments undertaken therein, a Committee for the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Persons with Disabilities, composed of one representative appointed by each state party, was to be established.

At the last ordinary session the General Assembly, reunited in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, adopted Resolution [AG/RES.2167 (XXXVI-O/06)], “Establishment of the Committee Provided for in the Inter-American Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Persons with Disabilities”, which requires the Secretary General to convene the first meeting of the Committee and to present to the member states, through the Permanent Council, a proposal on the documents needed in order to activate the Committee.

The Permanent Counsel adopted, on December 18 2006, a proposal from the Government of Panama to host the First meeting of the Committee for the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Persons with Disabilities, to be held on February 28 and March 1, 2007.

According to the Convention, the Committee shall be the forum for assessment of progress made in the application of the Convention and for the exchange of experience among the Member States parties. The reports prepared by the Committee shall reflect the deliberations; shall include information on any measures adopted by the Member States parties pursuant to this Convention on any progress they have made in eliminating all forms of discrimination against persons with disabilities, and on any circumstances or difficulties they have encountered in the implementation of the Convention; and shall include the Committee's conclusions, its observations, and its general suggestions for the gradual fulfillment of the Convention.

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