WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Organization of American States (OAS) joined the celebration of “Black History Month and the International Decade for People of African Descent” with a celebration on “Afro-Inspired Culture in the Americas” on Thursday, February 23, 2017, in the Hall of the Americas at OAS headquarters, 17th Street and Constitution Avenue, N.W.
The event featured several specialists on the influence of African culture in the Americas, including Demont Hussey, from Jamaica, who spoke about the history of reggae music; James Lovell and Vincent Martinez of Belize, who played Afro-Garifuna jazz music; Von Martin, from Trinidad and Tobago, who spoke about the history of the Trinitarian drums; Dr. Miguel Vilar, from National Geographic’s “Ancestral Discoveries” team, who presented the testimony of Henry Jímenez, who in 2016 took the DNA test kit; and Music and dance performances such as the Steel Pan Trinitarian Drums and the Congo Dance.
OAS Secretary General Luis Almagro and Assistant Secretary General Nestor Mendez participated in the event, during which the OAS Secretary for Access to Rights and Equity, Ideli Salvatti, presented the OAS Action Plan for the “International Decade for People of African Descent.”
The event was organized by Assistant Secretary General Méndez and the Permanent Missions to the OAS of The Bahamas, Belize, Bolivia, Colombia, the United States, Honduras, Jamaica, Panama, Peru, Trinidad and Tobago, Venezuela; and the Embassy and the Permanent Mission of Haiti.
As part of the celebration, an art exhibition was inaugurated at the Marcus Garvey Cultural Hall. The exhibition displayed works of art on loan from, among others, the Permanent Missions of Belize, Costa Rica, Guyana, Haiti, Jamaica, Nicaragua, Trinidad and Tobago, and Uruguay, as well as the Permanent Observer Mission of France and staff of the OAS General Secretariat. The exhibition is open to the public until February 28.
His Excellency Dr. Eugene Newry, Bahamas Ambassador to the United States, and his wife Mrs. Francoise Torchon Newry view an art exhibition in the Marcus Garvey Cultural Hall of the OAS that inaugurated on Thursday, February 23, as part of the OAS celebration of “Black History Month and the International Decade for People of African Descent.”
His Excellency Dr. Elliston Rahming (right), Bahamas Ambassador and Permanent Representative to the Organization of American States (OAS), and His Excellency Jean-Victor Harvel Jean-Baptiste, Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Haiti, view the art exhibition in the Marcus Garvey Cultural Hall of the OAS that inaugurated on Thursday, February 23, as part of the OAS celebration of “Black History Month and the International Decade for People of African Descent.”