OAS and Brazil Signed a Memorandum of Understanding for Meeting on Legal
Cooperation in Criminal Matters in Brasilia
Source: OAS Press Department
May 2, 2014
The Organization of American States (OAS) and the Government of Brazil
today signed a Memorandum of Understanding related to the Sixth Meeting
of the Working Group on Legal Cooperation in Criminal Matters, to be
held in Brasilia on May 15 and 16.
Secretary General of the OAS, José Miguel Insulza, said progress could
be made in Brasilia on issues that are being analyzed by several
informal working groups, coordinated by different States; and announced
that participants will consider three proposals for Inter-American
instruments. “The first is a draft protocol to the Inter-American
Convention on Mutual Legal Assistance, designed to facilitate the use of
new communication technologies and hearings by videoconference, an
initiative that has come to be led by El Salvador." The second -he
continued-is related to another protocol to the Convention for the
establishment of joint investigation teams, led by Chile." "And the
third aims to develop a new agile and expedited Inter-American legal
instrument on extradition led by Argentina," he said after signing the
agreement at the OAS headquarters in Washington, DC.
The OAS Secretary General added that the meeting will provide the
opportunity to make "concrete progress made by the General Secretariat
of the OAS to consolidate the network that facilitates the exchange of
information between authorities in legal cooperation". "This network has
been considered as a model by the United Nations and is useful for the
authorities involved in it because it allows them to solve specific
cases quickly and effectively," added Insulza.
The OAS leader highlighted the "continued and active" commitment of
Brazil to the process of the Meetings of Ministers of Justice or Other
Ministers or Attorneys General of the Americas (REMJA) and recalled that
this group already had the occasion to meet in Brazil in 2005 and in
2010, when the country hosted REMJA VIII. Secretary General Insulza said
that "this active engagement is a demonstration of the importance that
Brazil grants the central themes of the REMJAs: justice and
international legal cooperation."
“The OAS is the natural setting for the development of international law
in the Hemisphere," continued Secretary General Insulza. "It is in this
field that its unique quality is expressed, as in no other. More than
half of the Inter-American treaties are related to international legal
cooperation. Taken together, these treaties will constitute the largest
contribution of the OAS in this matter,” he added.
For his part, the Acting Representative of Brazil to the OAS, Breno Dias
da Costa, said that countries in the region face new challenges with the
internationalization of crime and criminal gangs operating in several
countries. "In this context, legal cooperation is indispensable for the
implementation of international criminal law, and in combating the
various forms of crime that cross borders," said the Brazilian diplomat.
The Brazilian diplomat said the OAS has much to contribute to the
region's legal cooperation. "Brazil believes that the OAS can
contribute, and has much to contribute, at the hemispheric level so that
our legal systems can operate more efficiently," he said. Dias da Costa
recalled that it was from this perspective that Brazil offered itself to
host the REMJA IX in 2010, as well as the meeting of experts on legal
cooperation of the member states of the OAS to take place in two weeks
Representative Dias da Costa noted that his country has great
expectations for the meeting in order to "move forward in the
discussions that have been taking place in the context of the REMJAs on
legal cooperation" in criminal matters.
A gallery of photos of the event is available here.
For more information, please visit the OAS Website at www.oas.org.