San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

President Appoints Ambassador to OAS

PRESIDENT Abel Pacheco onTuesday named Rina Contreras, his formerPresidency Minister, as Costa Rica’snew ambassador to the Organization ofAmerican States (OAS).Contreras will begin work at the OASon Nov. 1. She replaces Walter Niehaus,who will assist former Costa Rican PresidentMiguel Ángel Rodríguez (1998-2002)in his new job as secretary general of theOAS.Rodríguez was unanimously elected tothe OAS post on June 7 (TT, June 11) andtook office Sept. 15, promising to restructurethe organization (TT, Sept. 17).Rodríguez’s staff includes formerCosta Rican ambassador to the UnitedStates in Washington D.C., JaimeDaremblum, who stepped down on Sept.15. Tomás Dueñas, who served as formerForeign Trade Minister during theRodríguez administration and is nowpresident of the Costa Rican InvestmentBoard (CINDE), will replace Daremblumas ambassador to the United States onNov. 1 (TT, Sept. 17).Contreras was appointed PresidencyMinister when Pacheco took office inMay 2002. She resigned in May 2003under pressure from opposition legislators,who no longer recognized her as theExecutive Branch’s liaison to theLegislative Assembly, citing her allegedinvolvement in a welfare housing scandalin Santa Ana, west of San José (TT, May30, 2003).

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