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OAS Secretary General Calls for "a Single Effort of Coordination" in Haiti Aid

  January 18, 2010

The Secretary General of the Organization of American States (OAS), José Miguel Insulza, today said that the tragedy in Haiti following last week’s devastating earthquake has no comparsion in the history of the continent, and asked the international community to continue to provide help and to organize itself, plan and distribute aid under a single effort of coordination.

Secretary General Insulza, who is participating in the Global Summit for Haiti convened by the President of the Dominican Republic, Leonel Fernández, said that "it is essential that the level of aid be raised,” but warned that “it is fundamental that this effort of international solidarity be organized under a single effort of coordination outsied and inside Haiti, as proposed by US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton,” without parallel initiatives to compromise the success of the main objective, which is to save the lives of victims.

The Secretary General also highlighted the work of the organizations that make up the Inter-American System and emphasized the need to facilitate ways of transfering cooperation, such as opening an emergency corridor and other initiatives like “the creation of an International Committee made up by 25 donor countries and a Coordination Center in Haiti.”

"We are at a crucial moment in providing international assistance, and we must be willing to place everything under a single line of coordination outside Haiti and a single line inside Haiti” entrusted to the government of President Presidente René Preval, he insisted.

The Secretary General praised the Haitian President for his fortitude and his decision to lead the country’s reconstruction after the disaster caused by last week’s earthquake.

The meeting in Santo Domingo is being presided by the Dominican President, Leonel Fernández, and attended by, among others, the First Vice President of Spain, María Teresa Fernández de la Vega; the new head of MINUSTAH, Edmond Mulet; various prime minsters of the Caribbean; the Canadian Minister of State for Foreign Affairs of the Americas, Peter Kent; and the Secretary General of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), Edwin W. Carrington.

Reference: E-013/10