During the first plenary session of the 44th General Assembly of the Organization of American States, held in Asunción, Paraguay, on June 4, 2014, João Baena Soares, the Chair of the Inter-American Juridical Committee,
presented the annual report, which summarizes the developments of the past year. In his remarks about the Committee’s work, the Chair spoke about mandates that were carried out with respect to sexual orientation and gender identity and expression, protection of cultural property during armed conflicts, and inter-American judicial cooperation. He thanked the member states for supporting the consultations being undertaken by the Committee to ensure its work reflect the member states’ interests and experiences. He also described as practical the reports that the Committee has adopted over the past few years, singling out proposals on joint-stock companies, privacy and data protection, regulating the use of force and protecting persons in situations of internal violence, as well as protection of cultural property during armed conflicts. Turning to the topic of the promotion of international law, the Chair mentioned the 40th anniversary, in August of last year, of the Course on International Law, which is held annually in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Following this, the General Assembly plenary paid heartfelt
tribute to Ambassador Baena Soares in the presence of all the Heads of the Delegations and his family. The President of the General Assembly, Ambassador Eladio Loyzaga, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Paraguay; current OAS Secretary General José Miguel Insulza; and the
Head of the Brazilian Delegation, Ambassador Eduardo dos Santos, Secretary General for Foreign Affairs of Brazil, requested the floor. They saluted Ambassador Baena Soares’ career as a Brazilian diplomat and paid tribute to his legacy as Secretary General of the OAS.
During the 4th plenary session of the General Assembly, the OAS’ highest decision-making body elected new members to the Inter-American Judicial Committee. They begin their terms on January 1, 2015. Ambassador Baena Soares, of Brazil, the current Chair of the Committee, was reelected. Ambassador Joel Antonio Hernández García, of Mexico, and Dr. Ruth Stella Correa Palacio, of Colombia, were elected for the first time, to a 4-year term.
Video - Presentation by the Chair of the Inter-American Juridical Committee (Joao Clemente Baena Soares)
Video - OAS General Assembly in Paraguay Pays Tribute to Former Secretary General Baena Soares
Video - Remarks by the Ministry of Foreign Relations of Brazil (Eduardo dos Santos)
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