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OAS Secretary General calls to "Stand Firm, and Make no Concessions to the Problem of Transnational Organized Crime"

  March 2, 2012

The Secretary General of the Organization of American States (OAS), José Miguel Insulza, participated today in the closing session of the High-Level Hemispheric Meeting against Transnational Organized Crime held in Mexico City, during which he called upon States "not to give in to the magnitude of the work in the fight against the scourge of transnational crime; nor be seduced by the supposedly easy short-term solutions, and above all never surrender to the enemy or reconcile with him.” The meeting began yesterday at the headquarters of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs with the participation of the President of Mexico, Felipe Calderon; the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Patricia Espinosa, and the Attorney General, Marisela Morales.

At the closing session, Secretary General Insulza explained that "for two days we have analyzed the scope and meaning of the activities of transnational organized crime, but mostly we have examined our own ability to confront it", and acknowledged that, despite the obstacles, great progress has been achieved at the meeting. "Today we can say we know a little more about ourselves, what we currently do, and what we can do in the future to confront this terrible enemy that is transnational organized crime," he said.

Coinciding with the sentiments recently expressed by President Felipe Calderon, the head of the hemispheric organization recalled the need to address transnational crime from an international organized front. "We know that we impose on the enemy because we represent women and men, honest and decent people of our continent. We represent the most transparent and fair way to interact in society: democracy," he said and explained that crime, especially transnational organized crime, "represents the opposite: the destruction of institutions and individuals, the elimination of participation and dialogue."

Speaking about the capacity and conditions that the OAS has to support its Member States and act together against this crime, the OAS high-level representative emphasized the importance of using and strengthening those tools and promoting new initiatives such as the Centre for Cooperation in Combating Transnational Organized Crime.

Secretary General Insulza concluded his speech by thanking the conference’s host country “for the example that it is setting to the world, as a country that does not give up to crime or violence."

The High Level Hemispheric Meeting against Transnational Organized Crime was also attended by attorneys and prosecutors of the OAS member countries who analyzed specific proposals to streamline government actions against organized crime.

The meeting's agenda included topics such as the importance of effectively combating organized crime through legal and institutional modernization; progress in the region on penalizing criminal activities set in the Palermo Convention; and the strengthening of institutions in the fight against transnational organized crime in the Caribbean, among others.

For more information, please visit the OAS Website at

Reference: E-071/12