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OAS Permanent Council Submits Draft Resolution on Strategic Vision to the Special General Assembly

  September 10, 2014

The Permanent Council of the Organization of American States (OAS) submitted today a draft resolution on the Strategic Vision to the Special General Assembly that the hemispheric institution will hold this coming Friday, during a regular session in which it welcomed three ambassadors and bid farewell to another.

Permanent representatives agreed to forward the draft resolution to the OAS Special General Assembly that will examine the status of the process aimed at adapting the Organization’s objectives to the twenty-first Century. The debate on the Strategic Vision of the institution began two years ago at the initiative of the OAS Secretary General, José Miguel Insulza, who presented two documents on the matter on February 1, 2012 and on April 17, 2013, in which he stated the need to prioritize the activities of the OAS and to rationalize its financial resources. On both occasions, Secretary General Insulza stressed the importance to have “an inclusive OAS, made up of sovereign, diverse countries, legitimatized by democracy, acting with a common hemispheric agenda and in full equality.” After receiving a report from the Working Group on this topic, the Council decided to forward the draft resolution to the Assembly.

At the meeting, the Council welcomed the new representatives of Haiti, Panama, and Costa Rica, who recently presented their credentials to the Secretary General, and bid farewell to the Ambassador of El Salvador.

In his presentation to the Council, the new Representative of Haiti to the Organization of American States (OAS), Bocchit Edmond, expressed his gratitude to the Secretary General of the Organization for responding quickly to his country’s request for technical assistance in law enforcement activities. Ambassador Edmond indicated that his country proposed before the Inter-American Defense Board the drafting of a white book, which will support the development of the Caribbean country “because there cannot be development without security and, without security, it will be difficult to have respect for human rights”. The Haitian diplomat also thanked the Council for its support to the electoral process of his country and noted that in the coming days the Executive in Haiti will meet with a group of senators to adopt measures leading to the approval of an electoral law that enables relaunching the electoral process.

The new Permanent Representative of Panama, Jorge Miranda, said that his country is experiencing high economic growth beyond all expectations and noted that his government’s goal is to ensure that this growth reaches all citizens. Ambassador Miranda also asserted that his country will continue to foster dialogue, and “we will continue to promote Panama as a nation of convergence, rather than confrontation”. He further noted that his government wishes to strengthen Panama as a regional center for regional institutions and, in this regard, he indicated that efforts are already being made to ensure that the convening of the VII Summit of the Americas in his country in 2015 is successful.

Meanwhile, the new Permanent Representative of Costa Rica, Pablo Barahona, said that he joins the Council with the desire to discuss “as faithful representatives of these fierce peoples, always with unhurried energy and objectivity as the only anchor, all issues that continue to challenge us.” The Costa Rican diplomat called for “discussing candidly and without ideology the inconvenience to fight a war against drugs and, instead, the healthy intelligent approach to the problem from a public health standpoint, preventing it rather than punishing it, prioritizing financial strangulation, which most weakens organized crime”. Ambassador Barahona noted that to face the drug problem, it is also necessary to put emphasis on the “financial fight against money laundering “.

On another item on the agenda, the Council bid farewell to the Permanent Representative of El Salvador, Joaquín Maza Martelli. The Permanent Representative of Saint Lucia and Chair of the Council, Sonia Johnny said that the Salvadoran diplomat will be “greatly missed in this organization and, on behalf of the Permanent Council, let me wish you and your family all the best”.

For his part, Secretary General Insulza highlighted the career of the Salvadoran diplomat and congratulated him “for his brilliant career that continues to be extended.” The head of the OAS also praised his “great ability and calmness during all debates”. He further asserted that Ambassador Maza Martelli “is a diplomat committed to his country’s great causes, such as democracy, development, and human rights”.

Ambassador Maza Martelli thanked Secretary General Insulza “for always being receptive,” as well as “for his interest in the electoral process in El Salvador and his support to several projects being implemented in El Salvador”. The Salvadoran diplomat also expressed his gratitude to the Council for the Declaration issued recently on the situation of unaccompanied Central American minors who travel to the United States. Taking stock of his tenure as head of the Mission of El Salvador to the OAS, he stated that it was “very positive”.

On another item on the agenda, the Council approved the installation of the style committees of the 46th and 47th Special General Assemblies, which will be held on September 19 and 12, respectively. For the 46th Assembly, Guatemala will be responsible for reviewing texts in Spanish; Brazil, texts in Portuguese; Canada, texts in French; and the United States, texts in English. As to the 47th Assembly, Mexico will be in charge of Spanish texts; Brazil, of Portuguese texts; Haiti, of French texts; and Trinidad and Tobago, of English texts.

During the meeting, the delegations of Haiti; Panama; Costa Rica; Belize (on behalf of SICA), Saint Vincent and the Grenadines; Trinidad and Tobago; Barbados (on behalf of CARICOM); Bolivia (on behalf of ALADI); Canada; the United States; Mexico; Dominica; Nicaragua; Brazil; Antigua and Barbuda; Ecuador; Peru; Paraguay; Venezuela; Colombia; Honduras, Guyana; the Dominican Republic; Uruguay, Argentina and Chile took the floor. The Permanent Observer of Spain (on behalf of France, Italy, and Portugal) also took the floor.

A gallery of photos of the event is available here.

The video of the event will be available here.

The audio of the event is available here.

For more information, please visit the OAS Website at

Reference: E-367/14