Organization of American States

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Organization of American States

Commonly called the OAS. An international organization consisting of all independent states in North and South America (though not all members are active). It was established in 1948 to oppose the spread of communism. The OAS promotes democracy, economic cooperation and free trade. It also provides a forum for addressing grievances among members. It is based in Washington, D.C.
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The ninth Inter-American conference (the expression "Pan-Americanism" had fallen into disuse and was viewed with suspicion) took place in Bogota in 1948 and produced an institutional framework that would subsequently govern the continent's international relations, in the form of the founding charter of the Organization of American States, which absorbed the old Pan-American Union.
John Barrett, Director General of Pan-American Union, 1910
The continent's borders have scarcely changed since the Pan-American Union was founded, and fortunately, international armed conflicts have been few and far between," he said.
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