TEGUCIGALPA – In a brief ceremony on January 11, Chargé d’Affaires, a.i. Heide B. Fulton accepted the temporary Presidency of the G-16 group in Honduras, from outgoing President Giorgio Valentini, Resident Representative of the World Bank.
The handover marks the beginning of a six month period during which the United States Embassy will serve as coordinator for the organization of donor countries in Honduras. Members of the G-16 and the Coordinating Minister of the Government Jorge Ramon Hernandez Alcerro were present at the ceremony.
During her remarks, Chargé Fulton said, “We are assuming the presidency during a remarkable time in Honduran History. The G16 was first formed in response to Hurricane Mitch in 1998, when the international community came together in support of Honduras during a time of crisis. Honduras now finds itself facing a different sort of crisis. A winner of the election has been declared and recognized, but the wounds in society that appeared during the process remain deep and will take time to heal. While the current situation is different from the crisis out of which this group was formed, the need for support from the international community remains.”
Fulton also expressed her hope that the G-16 could play a positive role as Honduras faces an important opportunity to engage in a broad-based dialogue that allows participants from across Honduran society to raise important issues and promote reconciliation.
The last time the United States led the G-16 group was in 2012. The organization continues to grow in numbers with the Republic of Korea joining this year as an observer member.