Media Center

Press Release


  October 26, 2007

The Assistant Secretary General of the Organization of American States (OAS), Albert R. Ramdin, today underscored the international community’s efforts to strengthen democracy, security and development in Haiti, and reiterated the region’s ongoing commitment in supporting the Caribbean nation overcome difficult challenges.

Speaking in Buenos Aires, Argentina, at a meeting of the so called “2x9 mechanism,” which brings together representatives of the nine countries providing troops to the UN/MINUSTAH peacekeeping force in Haiti, Ambassador Ramdin, who also chairs the OAS Haiti Task Force, provided an overview of the progress achieved, but stressed the need for “sound political consultation and dialogue on the ground.”

“Haiti is one of the priority countries for the OAS,” the Assistant Secretary General said, adding “that while there are many levels and forms of coordination of development aid to Haiti, it may be time to harmonize and streamline all these existing dialogue mechanisms.”

Ambassador Ramdin explained that there is an absence of comprehensive information sharing mechanisms, and in this regard he proposed the establishment of an electronic database system that would receive and share information on the activities and initiatives from the international financial institutions, multilateral agencies, bilateral donors and civil society. He indicated that the OAS is prepared to provide assistance to this effort in close collaboration with the Ministry of Planning and External Cooperation.

In addition, the Assistant Secretary General called for a targeted approach to the development social and economic projects that can significantly increase, over time, the productive capacity in agriculture, manufacturing, tourism and trade.

Also speaking at the opening of the meeting were Argentinean Foreign Minister Jorge Taiana, the Haitian Ambassador in Argentina, Raymond Mathieu, and MINUSTAH’s Director for Political Affairs, Gerardo Chevalier.
Ramdin headed a five-member mission which included: Juan Gabriel Valdes, Adviser on Haiti to the OAS Secretary General; Victor Rico, Director of the Department for Special Missions and Conflict Resolution; Arthur Gray, OAS Office Director in Haiti, and Lance Leverenz, Pan American Development Foundation (PADF) Director for New Projects.

Reference: E-270/07