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OAS Director General Calls for Collective Strength Against Terrorism

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Friday, August 18, 2006 – Director of the OAS General Secretariat in St. Lucia Paul Spencer has reiterated the call by Secretary General of the OAS Jose' Miguel Insulza, for all OAS member states to collaborate against international terrorism. Insulza who also emphasised the important work of the OAS international Committee against terrorism, said member states need to remain one step ahead in fighting terrorism.

The development of the Inter American Convention Against Terrorism following the 9/11 terrorism attacks according to Mr. Spencer, shows the commitment of OAS members states to dealing with terrorism. “More than that” he said “they they have put some some meat to the convention. They have come up with a Program of Action to assist member states with this fight; and in particular we are very grateful for the assistance which some of member states like the US, Canada, Brazil and Trinidad and Tobago and others, have provided to the work program to implement the various provisions for the Convention.”

The Organization of American States is also providing assistance to member countries in the area of security. A series of workshops has been planned on the topic, “Inter-American tourism, and recreational facilities security”. St. Lucia will be represented by law enforcement and tourism officials at the first workshop to be held in Grenada next week. Spencer says the workshops are of paramount importance especially as the region will be hosting the ICC Cricket World Cup. “Private sector entities are the ones that implement or run the tourism plant, and they are sending two persons to that workshop. The whole idea is to plan ways in which to reduce the risk of the tourism plants in the Caribbean to acts of terrorism,” Spencer added.

The second workshop is scheduled for Mid September in St. Kitts and Nevis, while St. Lucia will host the last of the series slated for September 25th. Meantime the OAS Director, has lauded the efforts of Trinidad and Tobago as the only country in the Caribbean to provide staff from the public sector to help with designing programs that will respond to terrorism.

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