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Intervention at the Plenary Session 49th General assembly of the OAS Hon. Peter David, Minister of Foreign Affairs
Medellin, Colombia






Monday, July 1, 2019 4:38 PM- George's, Grenada
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Secretary General, Luis Almagro
Assistant Secretary General, Nestor Mendez
Minister of Foreign Affairs of Colombia, Carlos Holmes Trujillo Let me repeat the expressions of the gratitude of the Grenada delegation for the warm, excellent hospitality we have received here in Medellin.

Chairman, Grenada can identify with the theme chosen for this 49th Regular Session of the General Assembly:
Innovating to Strengthen Multilateralism in the Hemisphere.

Innovation is one of the most progressive concepts underlying development strategies, and building bridges towards the future we envisaged for our citizens

In fact, innovation promotes the advancement of our interconnectedness thereby permitting shared exchanges of experiences and ideas that contribute to our responses to development challenges and the attainment of the Millennium Development Goals.

As small states, Grenada and other CARICOM members perceive the OAS as a vital support base for development
grounded in innovation.

In this Multilateral setting, collaboration and collective efforts through shared responsibility, evoke positive outcomes
that deliver positive results.

As the current chair of the Council for Foreign and Community Relations of CARICOM, comprising of Foreign Ministers
in the region, I am pleased to see so many of my counterparts here today. It underscores the importance placed on
the OAS by CARICOM member states as a regional and hemispheric body through which innovation and development
can be pursued.

As such Chair, we will continue to struggle to ensure that our voices continue to make an impact on the policy-makers
of this organization. Hence, we continue to place emphasis on the development pillar of the OAS which is vital to our sustainable development – our very survival. I wish to emphasize Chair, that there can be no human rights or democracy without development; social development and sustainable development.

Chair, we also cannot escape the link between democracy and development. Grenada believes in the principles of peace, sovereignty, territorial integrity, self-determination, noninterference and constructive dialogue.

The maintenance of the Region as a zone of peace and security underpin development.

We will continue to advocate for a peaceful resolution to the situation in Venezuela, while cognizant of the fact that Venezuela is no longer a member of this noble institution. Chair, the OAS can count of Grenada to remain an active participant in the discourse on Venezuela as we seek resolution.

As Heads of Governments of CARICOM said in a January 24th statement, and I quote “Heads of Government reaffirmed
their guiding principles of non-interference and non-intervention in the affairs of states, respect for sovereignty, adherence to the rule of law and respect for human rights and democracy.

Heads of Government reiterated that the long-standing political crisis, which has been exacerbated by recent events can only be resolved peacefully through meaningful dialogue and diplomacy.”


With respect to the situation in our sister member state of Nicaragua, Grenada continues to underscore the importance
of dialogue and good faith negotiations.

In our consultations with Nicaragua we have observed a good faith effort by its government to resolve the issues they confront. Let us not be hasty in our pronouncements.

Notwithstanding this and the many other challenges facing the Organization, we see endless possibilities for opportunities to collaborate and find consensus in this hemispheric body.

The OAS, Chair is highly relevant, and we must ensure that the voices of all member states are heard, resulting in more rights for more people.

Chairman, the role of the OAS is an extremely import one, as is the role of the Permanent Council which reports to the
General Assembly.

Grenada assumes the Chair of the Permanent Council on 1st July, at a time when Venezuela and Nicaragua are both under the spotlight. We intend to maintain consultation and dialogue with all member states to ensure that the most effective and beneficial decisions are made and the best positive outcomes for the peoples of the member states of the region are realized.

To the Caribbean Region in particular, the maintenance of democracy, peace and security are as important as our
response to natural disasters and our climate resilience. We also continue to underscore the importance of security
and development, bearing in mind the programs that we have reviewed and agreed to.

Grenada and other CARICOM states continue to pursue viable economic growth that results in economic sustainability
and an improved quality of life.

This what development is about, and we certainly hope that in the allocation of resources to the various pillars of the OAS, development is not left behind. We are concerned that development has lagged behind as recent trends have shown.

Chairman, the allocation of the OAS budget continues to be a serious source of contention and disappointment to
CARICOM member states. My delegation is acutely aware of the need for austerity measures and for reform in the Organization.

But reform must reflect the needs of member states – both large and small.

In this regard, Chair, Grenada remains particularly concerned over possible marginalization of small states in the reform
process particularly at this time when we face the challenges of reclassification, of unfair tax classifications and of derisking.

Chair, my delegation hopes that our deliberations at this General Assembly to discuss these and other issues will not
be in vain.

Thank you Chair.


 

 

 

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