Basseterre, St. Kitts, April 08, 2019 (SKNIS): Several diplomats from St. Kitts and Nevis visited the Clarence Fitzroy Bryant College’s (CFBC) Division of Technical Vocational Education and Management Studies on Monday, April 08, to educate students on diplomacy.
The visit forms part of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs 2019 edition of Diplomatic Week that began on Sunday, April 07 and will conclude on Friday, April 12. It is held under the theme, “Securing a Resilient Future through Strategic Diplomacy and Effective Dialogue”.
The delegation comprised of H.E. Dr. Kevin Isaac, High Commissioner to The United Kingdom; H.E. Sam Condor, Permanent Representative to the United Nations, New York; H. E. Gustavo Martinez Pandiani, Ambassador of Argentina to the English Speaking Caribbean countries; H.E Verna Mills, Ambassador to the Republic of Cuba; H.E. Dr. David Doyle, Permanent Representative to UNESCO based in Paris, France, and H.E Sharlene Shillingford-Mcklmon, Ambassador to Belgium (representing most of OECS in Brussels, Belgium). Honorary consuls included Louise Tannock, Honorary Consul in Bermuda; Fatima Gonul Eken, Honorary Consul in Turkey and Tessy Ekpunobi, Honorary Consul in Nigeria.
His Excellency Pandiani explained to students that diplomacy is based on the concept of equal footing.
“Diplomacy is a place where everybody is equal – small countries, large countries, super powers, little islands – all of us are the same,” said the ambassador. “In fact, a very small country such as St. Kitts and Nevis is leading today, one of the most complicated conflicts in the region – the Venezuelan situation. “That means that it doesn’t matter how big you are, how big your Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is, you have something to say in the international community. So, do not believe that diplomacy is only a question of super powers. You can have a very important role, you can be a very important player in the international community if you have what you have in St. Kitts and Nevis and that is leadership.”
Prime Minister of St. Kitts and Nevis, the Honourable Dr. Timothy Harris, is the current Chair of CARICOM and CARICOM “is playing an instrumental role in solving the situation in Venezuela” Ambassador Pandiani added.
He outlined a pathway to serving a country at such a level.
“You don’t need to be a rich kid to be a diplomat, so do not stop yourself from considering a career in diplomacy because you believe it is not for you. It is for you if you really want it. More than likely you will have to work hard, you will have to go the extra mile and put in the extra effort to get it but if you want to do it you will do it. I can assure you of that,” said Ambassador Pandiani. “It is a question of passion, vocation and decision. Once you decide you want to represent your country you will do it and every experience you have in your life is going to be very good instruments for you to represent your country properly.”
H.E. Sam Condor shared similar sentiments and noted he was pleased to represent St. Kitts and Nevis.
“I am indeed honoured and privileged to represent my country at the United Nations (UN), basically the premier institution to do with multilateral diplomacy. Diplomacy is about communication and so we believe that the UN was established to communicate, to talk,” said the UN Ambassador. “Diplomacy is about communicating with other countries to build capacity to improve and develop your country. We are here in time and space to make our contribution to the development of humanity. That is what diplomacy is about. That is what we do on a daily basis all around the world.”
The following diplomats also visited the Nevis Sixth Form College: H.E. Jasmine Huggins, Ambassador of St. Kitts-Nevis (SKN) to the Republic of China on Taiwan; H.E. Thelma Phillip-Browne; Ambassador of SKN to the United States of America; H.E. Everson Hull, Permanent Representative of SKN to the Organisation of American States (OAS); H.E. Sherry Tross, High Commissioner for SKN to Canada; Justin Hawley, Consul General for SKN in the United Arab Emirates; Harold Marzouka, Honorary Consul of SKN in Haiti, and Matteo Forconi, Honorary Consul of SKN in Italy.