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OAS Chief Cites Democratic Strides in Latin America

The head of the Organization of American States says that despite its problems Latin America has made great strides with democracy in the past year.

OAS Secretary General Jose Miguel Insulza spoke Thursday in Washington at the American Enterprise Institute, a conservative research group.

He hailed the number of recent democratic elections in the region, notably the election of Rene Preval as president of Haiti, and new elections in Bolivia. He also praised the democratic transition in Ecuador and upcoming elections in Nicaragua.

Insulza said the problem in the region is not with democracy, but with governance.

Insulza indicated some of Latin America's challenges took place in the same countries where there were successes. He pointed out the resignation of the president of Bolivia, Carlos Mesa, and multiple delays in elections in Haiti due to logistical and security concerns.

Insulza became secretary general of the OAS one year ago.

Some information for this report was provided by AP.