Partnerships: The Organization of American States
Working Together for Peace in the Western Hemisphere
In this second installment in our series on the Department of Political Affairs’s (DPA) relationships with institutions around the globe we look at the Organization of American States (OAS), and specifically at the latest in a series of sessions – “Desk-to-Desk dialogues” – that aim to review the work of the two organizations in the Western Hemisphere and explore how to strengthen cooperation in diplomacy for peace.
Late last month, staff from DPA’s Americas Division traveled to Washington, D.C., for a day-long discussion with the Political Secretariat of the Organization of American States (OAS). The 26 January meeting, or “Desk-to-Desk dialogue”, was the eighth time the two offices came together to review the most pressing issues affecting the Americas.
Opening the meeting, Ambassador Gonzalo Koncke, Chief of Staff of OAS Secretary General Luis Almagro, highlighted the OAS’s cooperation with the United Nations in a number of areas and recalled that in 2016, Mr. Almagro had participated in the UN Summit on Migrants and Refugees as well as the UN General Assembly Special Session on the world drug problem.
Addressing the group, Claudia Mojica, Deputy Director of DPA’s Americas Division, provided an overview of the UN Secretary-General’s vision toward a “surge in diplomacy for peace”, which, among other things, calls on the UN to work in even closer cooperation with regional organizations such as the OAS. She also elaborated on how this new thinking was anchored in the three main areas of work: the 2030 Development Agenda, the General Assembly and Security Council Resolutions on Sustaining Peace and the Secretary-General’s Human Rights up Front initiative.
Regarding DPA’s activities in the Americas, Ms. Mojica’s presentation focused on the UN work in support of the peace process in Colombia; political-electoral changes in the region; and state-related corruption cases and their impact on the governance in many countries in the region.
“The Desk-to-Desk once again proved to be a most valuable exercise to maintain a close relationship with a key regional partner and to receive valuable insights to enhance the Americas Division’s work in the region,” Ms Mojica said after the meeting.