Ambassador Deborah-Mae Lovell today presented credentials as Antigua and Barbuda’s new Permanent Representative of the Organisation of American States (OAS), and renewed her government’s support for “an OAS that will set clear objectives and will work towards achieving measurable goals with beneficial outcomes for the hemisphere.“In delivering to newly-installed Secretary General Miguel çngel Rodr’guez the letters accrediting her, Ambassador Lovell also pledged her delegation’s unwavering support as the Organization is being restructured to be more effective and efficient.
Recalling the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) countries’ role in helping to “revolutionize” OAS thinking on the issue of hemispheric security, she said she intends to build on the OAS’ commitment by seeking to find modalities to further strengthen the existing “mechanisms of security in all its multidimensional aspects.”
The Antigua and Barbuda envoy thanked the OAS for being “a faithful partner” providing technical assistance to help spur that nation’s development process over the past twenty-two years. Underscoring the government’s full support for the OAS National Office in Antigua and Barbuda, Ambassador Lovell remarked that, “The support of the office to the various government agencies and departments… is critical to strengthening cooperation between Antigua and Barbuda and the OAS.”
Lovell, who is also Ambassador to the United States, touched on the issue of natural disaster reduction, saying she would work hard to help the OAS’ Inter-American Committee on Natural Disaster Reduction respond more effectively, as hurricanes have become more frequent and fierce, and “do so much harm to our countries.” She again conveyed Antigua and Barbuda’s sympathies over the death and “massive destruction” left by Hurricane Ivan in parts of the United States and the Caribbean.
Secretary General Rodr’guez, for his part, welcomed Ambassador Lovell—who had previously served as Alternate Representative in the Permanent Mission to the OAS that she now heads—and praised the great strides made by Antigua and Barbuda, “thanks to the creativity, the capacity and the commitment of the people.” He cited the Caribbean nation’s impressive per capita income and other areas of progress, especially since independence.
The new OAS chief, a former president of Costa Rica, took note of the Antigua and Barbuda Ambassador’s comments regarding natural disasters, and pledged greater priority to natural disaster issues. He also cited the exemplary solidarity the Caribbean region has demonstrated in the wake of Hurricane Ivan.