The Organization was established in order to achieve among its member states—as stipulated in Article 1 of the Charter—“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.” The OAS uses a four-pronged approach to effectively implement its essential purposes. The Organization’s four main pillars––democracy, human rights, security, and development––support each other and are intertwined through political dialogue, inclusiveness, cooperation, and legal and follow-up instruments that provide the OAS with the tools to maximize its work in the Hemisphere.
Policy and Research Papers
Draft Guidelines on Developing National Defence Policy and Doctrine Papers
The countries of the Americas have identified the development and sharing of national Defense White Papers as a useful confidence- and security-building measure for the promotion of security in the Hemisphere. This paper is intended to provide a brief outline of essential characteristics of Defense White Papers and to explain the rationale and the process for their development. A listing of elements commonly contained in White Papers is also provided.
It is important to note that there is no agreed standard format for White Papers in the Americas. This is perhaps a logical reflection of the differing historical, geographical, cultural, political and fiscal contexts in which the countries of the Americas define their security threats and defense objectives, capabilities and constraints. However, there are elements which are common to many White Papers. This paper focuses on basic principles and raises issues that Governments could usefully consider in the formulation of their own White Papers, based on the experience of OAS Member States which have already undertaken that process.
Haiti: Failed Justice or the Rule of Law? Challenges Ahead for Haiti and the International Community
The report provides a detailed analysis of three key aspects of administration of justice in the country: law enforcement and the Haitian National Police; the judiciary; and the system of detention facilities and prisons. As part of this analysis, the Commission addresses the particular problem of impunity and lack of public confidence in the justice system as well as the involvement of the international community in Haiti.
Observations of the Inter-American Commission on Human rights Upon conclusion of Its April 2007 Visit to Haiti
The objectives of the visit included receiving information on the present situation of human rights in Haiti, particularly in light of the first year in office of the Preval government; to conduct follow-up observations and discussions with Haitian authorities on the situation of the administration of justice; to specifically assess the situation of women and children, namely collect information on the forms of discrimination and violence against this group and the state response; and to engage in additional promotional activities on the Inter-American system of human rights.