On that occasion, Martinique’s contribution will be presented to the Permanent Memorial Committee (PMC) which is chaired by the Permanent Representative of Jamaica to the United Nations. The PMC was established to oversee the initiative of the Permanent Memorial. The event, during which President Letchimy will deliver remarks, will provide a platform to Member States, foundations, individual personalities, entities and organizations that have committed support to make their contributions with the appropriate acknowledgement of the General Assembly. The memorial will be erected in 2015 on the grounds of the United Nations Secretariat in New York City. Entitled “The Ark of Return,” the Permanent Memorial was designed by Rodney Leon, a celebrated American architect of Haitian origin based in New York.
The Pledging Luncheon will be followed by the launch at the United Nations the General Assembly of the International Decade for People of African Descent ((2015-2024).) .
Before his visit to New York, President Letchimy stated that this is a unique and historic opportunity for Martinique among the family of nations. He added that the island has a long standing and strong commitment to history and the duty to contribute to the knowledge gap as well as cultural and educational outreach on slavery and the transatlantic slave trade. He concluded that Martinique’s financial contribution to the Permanent Memorial is therefore commensurate with the island’s dedication and commitment in this regard.
While in New York from December 10 to 12, 2014, President Letchimy will also meet with the business community, private sector and investors. He will also meet separately with Mr. Lloyd Williams, CEO of the Chamber of Commerce of Greater Harlem, and the French-American Chamber of Commerce.
On December 11, 2014 at 6.00 pm at the United Nations’ Dag Hammarskjöld Library’s Penthouse, Mr. Letchimy will hold a causerie in French on his book titled “Sur la Route de la Trace avec Aimé Césaire”. The book focuses on the teachings of Césaire (1913 – 2008), the prominent poet, author and politician from Martinique and one of the founders of the négritude movement who wrote “A Tempest”, “Discourse on Colonialism” and other major literary works.
The Caribbean Island with French Flair, The Isle of Flowers, The Rum Capital of the World, The Isle of the Famed Poet (Aimé Césaire) – Martinique ranks among the most alluring and enchanting destinations in the world. As an overseas region of France, Martinique boasts modern and reliable infrastructure – roads, water and power utilities, hospitals, and telecommunications services all on par with any other part of the European Union. At the same time, Martinique’s beautifully unspoiled beaches, volcanic peaks, rainforests, 80+ miles of hiking trails, waterfalls, streams, and other natural wonders are the equal of neighboring Dominica to the north and St. Lucia to the south, so visitors here truly get the best of both worlds.
The currency is the Euro, the flag is Le Tricolour, and the official language is French, but Martinique’s character, cuisine, musical heritage, art, culture, common language, and identity are of a distinctly Afro-Caribbean inclination known as Creole Martiniquais. It is this special combination of modern world conveniences, pristine nature, and rich heritage that has earned for Martinique several notable distinctions in recent years, including being named “Best Caribbean Destination” by About.com, and “Top Caribbean Island for Delectable Dining” by Caribbean Travel + Life. The Bay of Fort-de-France, which fronts Martinique’s charming capital city, was also recently inducted into The Club of The Most Beautiful Bays in the World.
Martinique’s storied history further stirs travel passions. Napoleon’s bride, Empress Josephine, was born and raised in Martinique, while the majestic Mt. Pelée volcano and St. Pierre, The Pompeii of the Caribbean, are found here.