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Press Release


  March 16, 2005

April 7 is when the Organization of American States (OAS) will elect a new Secretary General. The Organization’s Permanent Council so decided today, issuing a resolution for a special session of the General Assembly to be convened on that date to elect a new OAS head.

The resolution issued by the Permanent Council, which comprises the member state Ambassadors, set the election date after Ambassadors Esteban Tomic of Chile, Abigail Castro de Pérez of El Salvador, and Jorge Chen of Mexico—countries with candidates—agreed to the date. This followed closed-door meetings with the coordinators of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), the Central American Group (GRUCA) and the Latin American Integration Association (ALADI) groups as well as Canada and the United States.

Permanent Council Chairman Manuel María Cáceres of Paraguay had proposed the consultations, after Chile’s Ambassador explained that his government needed to request a change from the original proposed date of March 30 for the election.

The Permanent Council resolution also underscored the need for the Organization to elect a Secretary General as soon as possible so it can “pursue its agenda in the short, medium, and long terms.”

The candidates for the top OAS post are Jose Miguel Insulza Interior Minister of Chile; Francisco Flores, former President of El Salvador; and Luis Ernesto Derbez, Foreign Minister of Mexico.

Reference: E-051/05