Venezuelan activist, actress, and model Patricia Velásquez has been designated as the Organization of American States (OAS) Goodwill Ambassador for the Rights of Indigenous Peoples of the Americas.
Velásquez, who is descended on her mother’s side from the Wayúu Taya people, said she will fight for the rights of all indigenous peoples. “It is an honor to echo the call by all the indigenous communities of the Americas. I assume this commitment with great responsibility. It is not only for my Wayúu people, but also the Quechua, Yanomami, Guaraní, Aymara, Secoyas, and many others—we are all cousins,” said Velásquez.
For his part, the secretary-general of the OAS, Luis Almagro, indicated that with the new appointment the OAS takes a step further in promoting its theme of “more rights for more people.” “I am proud that the OAS can count on the support of a faithful defender of the rights of indigenous peoples in the Americas to help us in the effort to foster understanding and promote their inclusion,” he added.
Patricia Velásquez is the president of the Wayúu Taya Foundation, a nonprofit organization that strives to improve the situation of the indigenous peoples of the Americas.
Photo: Patricia Velásquez, Credit: Juan Manuel Herrera/OAS