Last week, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo congratulated Luis Almagro on winning reelection to serve as Secretary General of the Organization of the American States (OAS). Secretary Pompeo commended Almagro for his work promoting democracy in South America and holding Castro accountable in Cuba.
While CWA International is grateful for Almagro’s stance against socialism, including against the illegitimate Maduro regime in Venezuela, there have been concerns regarding his history of proabortion statements
Thankfully, prior to his reelection Secretary Almagro affirmed the right to life and his commitment to uphold that right as a pillar of the OAS convention stating:
“[…] definitely, the principles of religious freedom that I have mentioned and the principles of the right to life are fundamental principles and rights […] The application of the fullest validity of Article 4 of the American Convention is essential.”
Article 4 of the American Convention on Human Rights declares: “Every person has the right to have his life respected. This right shall be protected by law and, in general, from the moment of conception.”
It is hard to overstate the significance of this statement by Secretary General Almagro.
This statement is the result of CWA International meeting privately with Secretary Almagro twice in the last three months, working diligently alongside other coalition partners to ask him to defend life and the unborn as the leader of the OAS.
After speaking with him about the importance of protecting all life and upholding the national sovereignty of each member state of the OAS, Secretary Almagro committed to include provisions in his election platform stating abortion is not an international right and affirming the national sovereignty of the countries who oppose abortion. Almagro also promised to support the freedom of religious-based organizations.
The OAS is comprised of 35 member states from North, Central, and South America, including the U.S. and Canada, as well as the Caribbean. According to Article 1 of its charter, OAS was formed in order to achieve “an order of peace and justice, to promote their solidarity, to strengthen their collaboration, and to defend their sovereignty, their territorial integrity, and their independence.” It is a regional entity similar to how the United Nations is a global one.
When Almagro was first elected Secretary General five years ago, he espoused the need for access to abortion:
“[T]he Americas continue to have some of the most restrictive laws regarding sexual and reproductive rights and freedoms [euphemism for abortion], and that reality has to change” [emphasis added].
This directly contradicts the OAS American Convention, not to mention the real healthcare needs of women.
This is why it was imperative Secretary Almagro declare his support for the OAS position on life. The secretary general’s role is to uphold the existing documents and principles, not project an agenda onto it.
Thankfully in March, Secretary Almagro committed publicly to upholding the American Convention and affirmed the right to life as set forth by OAS.
Though CWA International continues to work with Secretary Almagro to resolve some differences regarding defense of the family, we are excited he has made these pro-life declarations in a candidate forum prior to his reelection. We look forward to working alongside him to uphold OAS’s stance on protecting life from conception.
We join Secretary Pompeo in praising Secretary General Almagro’s promotion of freedom in the Americas and pushing back against the repressive socialist regimes of Venezuela, Nicaragua, and communist Cuba. We applaud him for also promising to protect the dignity and life of the unborn.
True freedom for all people.