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Belize attends 44th regular session of the general assembly of the OAS Print E-mail
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Thursday, 12 June 2014 00:00

Minister of Foreign Affairs and Attorney General of Belize, the Hon. Wilfred Elrington, headed Belize’s delegation to the 44th Regular Session of the General Assembly of the Organization of American States held in Asuncion, Paraguay on June 3rd - 5th under the theme “Development with Social Inclusion”.

In the Declaration of Asuncion hemispheric leaders undertook, “To commit their efforts to eradicating hunger and poverty, in particular extreme poverty, combating inequity, inequality, discrimination, and social exclusion, and increasing equitable access to health services, as well as to quality and inclusive education; priority objectives which should inform actions of the inter-American system.”

Minister Elrington, in the same vein, spoke of Belize’s efforts towards social inclusion and stated that “Development with social justice is a concept that has, for the most part, been alien to our hemisphere for upwards of five hundred years.” He said “that in Belize we appreciate that creating economic opportunities for the most vulnerable, reducing poverty, and increasing social inclusion are outcomes that will not spontaneously result from economic growth alone nor from the normal interaction of societal and interest groups.” He continued therefore that in Belize “our government has been assiduous in initiating measures to provide social safety nets with programs including conditional cash transfers, a food pantry, and a program to provide monetary support to elder citizens over the age of sixty-five.”

Among decisions adopted in this General Assembly is a resolution calling on the international community to renew and strengthen their support for the OAS Fund for Peace. This Peace Fund was established by the OAS General Assembly in 2000 as a tool to enable the organization to raise financial resources to fulfill the mandate established in its founding Charter of strengthening peace and security, preventing conflicts, and resolving disputes among member states. This Fund is the principal channel for assisting Belize and Guatemala to implement confidence building measures and to maintain the OAS Office in the Adjacency Zone as efforts are being made to find a final and definitive resolution of the Guatemala claim. 

The delegation of Belize included Chief Executive Officer in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, H.E. Alexis Rosado; Belize’s Ambassador to the USA and Permanent Representative of Belize to the OAS, H.E. Nestor Mendez; and Minister Counsellor and Alternate Representative of Belize to the OAS, Ms. Ardelle Sabido.