CARACAS, Friday December 02, 2011 | Update
Summit in Caracas

For Washington, the OAS is "preeminent" in hemispheric matters

The State Department Spokesman Mark Toner avoided commenting on the validity of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (Celac)

Friday December 02, 2011  04:06 PM

The US government on Friday reiterated that the Organization of American States (OAS) is the "preeminent" body to address the issues of the countries in the Americas.

During his usual daily briefing, State Department Spokesman Mark Toner avoided commenting directly on the validity of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (Celac), which will be launched on December 2-3 at a presidential summit in the Venezuelan capital.

"There are many sub-regional organizations in the hemisphere; we belong to some of them, and we do not belong to others, like this," said Toner, Efe reported.

"Obviously we continue working through the OAS, as the preeminent multilateral organization that speaks for the hemisphere," said Toner, without elaborating.

On Thursday, the OAS welcomed the Celac, a new hemispheric body excluding the US and Canada.

The Celac, promoted by the president of Venezuela, Hugo Chávez, has emerged as a purely Latin American and Caribbean organization, without the US and Canada. Celac is the heir of the Rio Group and the Summit of Latin American and the Caribbean on Integration and Development (CLAC).

Living with HIV/AIDS (II)

At first she agreed that I use her real name, that she had no problems with that at all. After all, living with HIV had driven her to help others – as a workshop facilitator giving talks and conducting seminars, or as a volunteer for local AIDS Service Organizations like Acción Solidaria (Solidary Action) and Mujeres Unidas por la Salud (Women United for Health, or Musa), a support group network for HIV-positive women. But when we were well into the interview, the realization that she might lose her private health insurance coverage made her change her mind.

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