United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon addressed the Permanent Council of the Organization of American States during a protocolary session on Feb. 13 at OAS headquarters in Washington, D.C.
Dr. Carissa F. Etienne, Director of the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), attended the session at the invitation of OAS Secretary-General José Miguel Insulza and spoke with U.N. Secretary-General Ban.
In his remarks, Ban told the members of the Permanent Council, “I am convinced that the United Nations can play a greater role in your region—just as your region can play an ever more important role in the U.N.” He added that cooperation between the United Nations and regional organizations “is a necessity,” and “we must continue to promote innovative arrangements.”
He cited as examples of such cooperation joint missions to Haiti and a partnership involving the OAS, the U.N. Economic Commission on Latin America and the Caribbean, the U.N Development Program, PAHO, the International Labour Organization, the World Bank, and the Inter-American Development Bank, which provides follow-up to the Summits of the Americas.
OAS Secretary-General Insulza told Ban and members of the OAS Permanent Council that “the Americas and the United Nations, since their very beginnings, have maintained deep and extensive cooperation ties at an unprecedented level.”
As Regional Office for the Americas of WHO, PAHO is a member of the United Nations System. It also serves as the specialized health agency of the Inter-American System, whose other members are the Organization of American States, the Inter-American Development Bank, and the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture.
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