General — 23 July 2013 — by Adele Ramos
Ambassador Mendez appointed to head CIDI-OAS body in Washington

Belize’s Permanent Representative to the Organization of American States (OAS), Nestor Mendez, has assumed the chairmanship of the OAS Inter-American Council for Integral Development (CIDI).

According to the OAS, the purpose of CIDI is to promote cooperation among its member states for the furtherance of their integral development and, in particular, to help eliminate extreme poverty.

Mendez said that integral development is a fundamental element in fighting the ills that afflict our society, such as violence, crime and insecurity.

“Those things can best be combated by the creation of access for economic opportunities for our people,” Mendez commented.

The Belize Ambassador took over the chairmanship of CIDI from John Beale, Barbados Permanent Representative to the OAS, who held the term for a year.

At the conclusion of his term, Beale highlighted education, in particular, and cited as an example of its impact the experience of the Colombian city of Medellin that has achieved “a remarkable turnaround and is now recognized as a major center of entrepreneurship,” said an OAS release.

Beale said that through better education, the people of the Hemisphere can achieve a better quality of life and distance themselves from the problems of violence, crime and drugs.

Ambassador Mendez presented a plaque of recognition to Ambassador Beale on behalf of the Council, for his work as CIDI chair.

The handover ceremony took place at the headquarters of the Organization in Washington DC, where Mendez is based.

According to the OAS, CIDI reports directly to the General Assembly. The Council is composed of all member states who meet in regular, extraordinary, specialized and/or sectoral meetings.

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