Dominican Republic Tells OAS to Apologize for 1965 US Invasion

American General Robert York during the United States occupation of the Dominican Republic from 1965 to 1966. | Photo: U.S. Armed Forces

President Medina said during the opening of the OAS General Assembly that the apology was critical for the body to move forward with credibility.

The Dominican Republic asked the Organization of American States to apologize for its support of the U.S. invasion of the island in 1965 as it opened the first plenary session of the General Assembly.

Dominican Republic President Danilo Medina called for the OAS to «pay off its historical debt» for its occupation and “validation” of the U.S. intervention during its civil war, which killed thousands of Dominicans.

He said that the apology would be essential to the credibility of the organization, which should be self-critical when facing sensitive issues like intervention in Venezuela.

«We must confront without fear the mistakes of the past to ensure that they are never again repeated in the future,” he said.

The OAS, which brings together 34 American states including the United States but not Cuba, has spent recent weeks debating the situation in Venezuela. OAS head Luis Almagro has argued in favor of intervention through the so-called ‘Democratic Charter,’ while most member states have backed initiatives for dialogue between the Venezuelan government and opposition parties.

Medina called for unity and expressed his support for dialogue initiated by UNASUR, adding the importance of respecting legitimate governments, said teleSUR correspondent in Santo Domingo, Madelein Garcia.

Almagro supported Medina’s resolution for apology, condemning the OAS for “twisting the history and political sovereignty” of the island, and made it clear that the plenary sessions, which begin Tuesday, will focus on Venezuela.

In its 46th year, the General Assembly’s talks will focus on the theme, “Institutional Strengthening for Sustainable Development in the Americas,” and other issues like water generation, the environment, community development, migration and human rights. They body will also adopt documents two years in the making: the American Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples and the Inter-American Program for Sustainable Development.

Heads of state will also address the financial difficulties of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, which will have to lay off 40 percent of its staff and suspend much of its work if it fails to raise the two million dollars that went missing this year before the session’s close on Wednesday.



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