Friday, June 07, 2013

Panama, host of next Americas’ summit after consensus to invite Cuba

Friday, June 7th 2013 - 03:30 UTC

An “ad hoc” committee, made up of various countries, will advise the Government of Panama, host of the 2015 Seventh Summit of the Americas, regarding a possible invitation to Cuba to participate in the next triennial meeting of Heads of State and Government of the Hemisphere.

The decision was announced by the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Panama, Fernando Núñez Fábrega, during the meeting of the Summit Implementation Review Group (SIRG), held Thursday in the framework of the forty-third regular session of the Organization of American States (OAS) in Antigua, Guatemala.

The group’s precise composition is yet to be determined, since it will be open to the participation of all member states.

The SIRG meeting was the first held in anticipation of the Seventh Summit of the Americas, which, as decided by the OAS General Assembly last year, would take place in Panama. The Panamanian Foreign Minister reaffirmed the commitment of President Ricardo Martinelli’s government to the Summits process and invited the nations of the Hemisphere to come to his country “with the conviction that we are united by ties of solidarity that inspire us to continue moving forward toward the well-being of our peoples.”

The Panamanian minister assured those present that his country intended to steer the Summit deliberations in line with its views that it was “essential to engage in frank dialogue conducive to identifying concrete measures for continuing to gain strength as a region of opportunities and benefits for our partners both within and outside the region.”

Foreign Minister Núñez Fábrega concluded by saying: “I invite you to take advantage of this opportunity to work together to lay out the objectives of a region seeking to rise to the highest standards of economic development. We will devote the human and material resources necessary to ensure the success of the work of the 2015 Summit of the Americas.”

The SIRG meets at the ministerial level every year in the framework of the regular session of the General Assembly to address the matter of implementation and follow-up of the Summit mandates. The Summits Secretariat informs the states about progress made by the institutions of the Joint Summit Working Group (JSWG) in carrying out the mandates, and the states then have the opportunity to address the plenary of the SIRG to share information on advances made at the national level in implementing the mandates of the Sixth Summit and earlier Summits.

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