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OAS Assistant Secretary General:"Collaboration on Security Issues More Important than Ever"

  February 24, 2010

The Organization of American States (OAS), through its Secretariat for Multidimensional Security, today signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) to strengthen cooperation activities in areas of transnational security, including the fight against the production, use and illegal trafficking of drugs; organized crime and terrorism, including human trafficking and the trafficking of firearms; money laundering; corruption and cybercrime, and other areas of mutual interest.

OAS Secretary General Albert R. Ramdin represented the hemispheric organization during a signing ceremony today at United Nations headquarters in New York City.

“More than ever before, countries around the world need to work together to address threats to the security and stability of nations,” Ramdin said. “We are facing increasingly sophisticated and intense criminal activity and other security threats made worse by the effects of an international economic crisis, the devastation wreaked by natural disasters and the vulnerability of states with weak institutions. The transnational nature of these threats calls for collaboration among governments, international organizations and law enforcement agencies more than ever before. That is why I am proud today that the OAS has once again reinforced its commitment to be a hemispheric leader in addressing these issues and strengthened its relationship with the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime.”

The OAS and UNODC have worked together for more than a decade on various projects and programs—including training courses and exchange of information and resources on various areas of mutual interest. This new strengthening of an established partnership will help the two supranational organizations exchange further knowledge, experience and resources in seeking to address issues of transnational security, and will improve their ability to effectively carry out their respective missions and responsibilities, minimize duplicative efforts and promote the optimization of resources in benefit of their common Member States in the Western Hemisphere.

The OAS Secretariat for Multidimensional Security advises the Organization’s General Secretariat and political bodies on all matters pertaining to hemispheric security. Its mission is to coordinate cooperation among OAS Member States to fight threats to national and citizen security.

Reference: E-049/10