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We the Ministers of Foreign Affairs and Heads of Delegation of the Non- Aligned Movement, gathered in Cartagena de Indias, Colombia, on the occasion of the XIII Ministerial Conference, held on 9-10 April 2000,
Desiring to lend the unequivocal support of the Non Aligned Movement to the efforts by African countries to address their numerous challenges, and to sustain the momentum generated by increasing world attention to the aspirations and objectives of the African renaissance,
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Opening of the Conference
Election of Officers (Agenda Item 2)
Adoption of the Agenda (Agenda item 3)
Report of the Preparatory Meeting of Senior Officials (Agenda Item 4)
Organisation of Work (Agenda Item 5)
Report of the Chairman of the Non-Aligned Movement (Agenda Item 6)
Review of the International Political and Economic situation (Agenda Item 7)
Consideration and Adoption of the final documents of the Ministerial Conference (Agenda Item 8)
Closing of the Conference
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Your Excellency Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, Minister of Foreign
Affairs of South Africa
Cartagena, a city full of history and legend, and meeting point of men and women from around the world, receives you again with all the affection of the Colombian people "in whose blessed soil the Creator deposited an infinity of marvellous things," and welcomes you to this Ministerial Conference.
May I first make special mention of the leadership which South Africa, as President of the Non-Aligned Movement, as given us, and extend our appreciation to its President Thabo Mbeki, and to his Minister of Foreign Affairs.
Ministers and Heads of Delegation,
This is the first conference of the non-aligned Countries in the new millennium. It is a unique opportunity to review the achievements of the Movement, and to deploy our collective will before the challenges of the future.
At the end of the Cold War, a period began in which a new spirit of co-operation promised an era of peace and prosperity in the world. During the decade completed, unprecedented possibilities have been opened up, but at the same time conflicts of local interests, and new tensions, problems and threats have emerged. It has not yet been possible to establish the conditions for a safe, stable, regulated- and hence predictable - world.
Since the collapse of the two-power world, intellectuals and political leaders have been attempting to find a paradigm that reflects the realities of the emerging order. In this post-cold-war era, it has become clear that the world is passing through a period of political transition, and as such is characterized by risks, imbalances, and uncertainties. But it is also a period of opportunities and challenges.
Our historic imperative is to foster an international order whose essential foundation is democratic participation in all States in taking decisions on the basic items of the global agenda: an order inspired by respect for human rights and the full application of international humanitarian law. An order founded on the consolidation of an impartial collective security system. An order in which the peaceful solution of differences must be the golden rule, and not the exception. An order in which intergovernmental organizations must play the key role in shaping our history.
We have the right and the duty to play an active part, on an equal footing, in the definition of a global order, which includes the aspirations and interest of our developing countries. An order which regulates globalization will have to take account of the very great challenges faced by mankind: the reduction of abject poverty, the risks to the environment that concern this whole planet, the marginal situation of huge numbers of people around the world, the lethal menace of nuclear, chemical and biological weapons, global threats to human health, natural disasters, violations of human rights, fundamental guarantees for the individual and the world problem of drug-trafficking, amongst others.
The dawn of the new century is an opportunity to ask ourselves what kind of Movement we are, what our goals are and how we can ensure that the Movement will be a dynamic and interactive group, with a visible influence in world affairs.
With the end of the Cold War, some were quick to predict that our Movement would disappear. It is not an insignificant fact that ten years after, the Movement maintains its full validity and vitality.
There is the evident possibility of a one-power world, and a dangerous trend towards actions taken outside the context of the worlds supreme forum indeed, outside the Security Council, its senior body, responsible for the maintenance of world peace and security.
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The relevant question now does not refer, therefore, to the existence or validity of the Movement. That question has been answered. The truly important question should refer to the role of the Movement in the shape and direction of the international agenda. We represent the overwhelming majority in the United Nations.
Unfortunately, it is not always our points of view that count. We often find that the formula for solutions has been worked out before we are consulted. We are too often limited to offering a reaction. Meanwhile, new norms and orientations are established which are vital to our future but lack the vision of our societies. It is urgent that the Movement make a careful examination of the implication of these developments.
The Movement should be a pro-active group in shaping the political and economic agenda of the world. The pace of globalisation and the challenges of multilateralism leave us no choice. If we want to be part of the winds of change instead of being blown away by them we must make our presence stronger and press for an agenda, which looks for practical results.
Heads of Delegation, Delegates,
The United Nations Summit of the Millennium, to be held in September, gives us a valuable opportunity to do this. We should take advantage of the Summit to define a new model of international cooperation which will acts as the basis of a world order which is more human, with greater economic and social justice, in which each nation may develop its own potential.
The Movement must consolidate its position regarding the nature and scope of the Summit, so that the Summit will be effective and fruitful. The Summit must be a forum for the world's leaders to develop a relevant and constructive dialogue. To start a serious, in-depth discussion on the future of United Nations, and the future of the world. This Conference provides the opportunity to advance in that direction.
Ministers and delegates,
One of the central questions which, to tell the truth, lacks a complete answer from the Movement is how to face the challenges of globalization.
This vacuum is more notorious if we consider the risks of marginalization already faced by the developing countries.
In this context, it is crucial to examine the impact of globalization on the fabric of society of our countries. And the introduction of people-centered development models in the context of todays world of rapid liberalization of trade and finance. The Movement should encourage the definition of long-term development strategies in which all countries, regardless of size, have an open and free opportunity to become meaningful members of the new economic order.
Another of the challenges to face is the compatibility between the principles and values of national sovereignty and globalization. How do we reconcile the defense of democracy and human rights, new needs for peace and international security, the liberalization of trade and investment, conservation of environment, and the fight against emerging threats - with the principles of non-intervention, sovereignty of States and other values of international law? The Movement should give priority attention to the examination of this question and its response to it.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
In recent years, the international community has faced unprecedented challenges in the humanitarian field. Large numbers of people have suffered the devastating effect of natural disasters and situations of conflict. Colombia shares the legitimate concerns of the international community and international organizations, in the face of the magnitude and frequency of such emergencies. They are a challenge to human solidarity, and demand a satisfactory response.
The Movement should promote a free and open discussion of these topics by multilateral institutions. Any new orientation of humanitarian assistance should be based on unconditional respect for the Charter of the United Nations and international law. It must also be inspired by the basic criteria of neutrality and impartiality.
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Equally, and as the interpretation of the Charter is broadened to make room for humanitarian intervention, the modes of that intervention should also be broadened. We should insist on the need to prefer preventive measures because they cost fewer lives and less expense in armed action, as a basic element in our reflections. Here, I quote the words of the Secretary General of the United Nations, Kofi A. Annan that we must also recognize that all armed intervention is, in itself, the result of a failure to prevent. And that when we consider the future of intervention, we must redouble our efforts to strengthen our capacity to prevent, including early-warning, preventive diplomacy, preventive displacement and preventive disarmament."
Recent experience has shown that dialogue, negotiation and the creation of conditions, which favour development, can be an effective contribution to overcoming the causes of conflict.
This vision should be complemented with respect for the principles of international humanitarian law, as a fundamental component of humanitarian assistance in cases of conflict. Particular priority must be given to the most vulnerable groups in situations of confrontation.
International humanitarian law is an essential element in securing the sustainability of peace processes. This is precisely one of the basic premises, which the Government of Colombia has determined for its peace policy. It is the main purpose of the Government to continue to encourage the humanization of the internal conflict, as we move along the road towards the ultimate objective of eliminating it, once and for all, from our territory. We have called upon those involved in the confrontation and we have said to them that if the objective of their struggle is related to the interests of the people, the first sign of that struggle should be full respect for civil population.
Action to consolidate peace also entails a start from the very beginning of construction of the society that will exist after the accords are signed, in areas such as the strengthening of human rights, the reconstruction and consolidation of political institutions and humanitarian assistance for the innocent victims of conflict.
And it is precisely in the framework of the strengthening of our democratic institutions which I presented to the Colombian people in my recent proposal of a referendum to bring new order to our ways of practising politics, appealing to the sovereign decision of the people, within the mandate of our Constitution. Our nations must always follow the path of respect for institutions, and that is what Colombia, deeply attached to its traditions of law and democracy, is now doing.
In the heart of every Colombian there now shines the hope of restoring peace and consolidating co-existence and reconciliation in society. In one and a half years we have made progress that was long unthinkable. But now we have started a process of negotiation with the FARC, the oldest and largest of the insurgent groups. We have agreed on an agenda. The negotiators have started an analysis of economic and social issues. We have encouraged wide-ranging participation by the public, through an Agenda Committee, which will process the concerns expressed by ordinary people and different groups in society. We have held talks with the ELN, which we hope will allow us to begin formal negotiations.
There is a very long way to go, of course. But there now exists among us the conviction that we in Colombia can also silence the guns, and achieve peace. This implies the great challenge of consolidating the dialogue process with the insurgents, and undertaking far-reaching political, economic and social transformations, which Colombia requires so as to be a prosperous and peaceful country, with equality of opportunities.
I must repeat to you, as prominent members of the international community, that no insurgent group and nobody engaged in armed conflict in any part of the world, can claim to be relieved of any obligation to comply strictly with the norms and principles and international humanitarian law. Its application does not depend on political status: it is a universal ethical imperative, which binds States and non-States alike. Nobody can abdicate from this ethical code, in any action, or in any situation.
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A key factor in these efforts has been the support and solidarity for our Diplomacy for Peace in friendly peoples, governments, and international organizations. Colombia is grateful for such support, for the many voices of encouragement, and co-operation by international community. Now, as we are ready to take the process deeper, we need that political support and facilitation from friendly countries more than ever before.
We rely on the Non-Aligned Movement and other countries and organizations represented here, with the certainty that the conflict solution in Colombia is also a matter of interest to the world. Expressions of solidarity and support from the Member Countries of the Non Aligned Movement will be an invaluable additional stimulus for us to pursue the quest for national reconciliation in Colombia.
Another of the great challenges, which the international community must face today, is the scourge of corruption. Sadly, it is a cancer, which has penetrated deep into all organs of power, blocking our road to progress and social justice.
The referendum, which I have called, justly interprets the will to create institutional mechanisms and means to combat corruption efficiently.
Corruption is asphyxiating us. Its stranglehold has reached all branches of public life. But good examples begin at home: we have started the house-cleaning operation in the Executive, and will not let up until Colombia is corruption-free.
Today I invite you to join efforts in this urgent world crusade for transparency.
Ministers, Heads of Delegation, Ladies and Gentlemen,
In closing, I would like to express my appreciation and satisfaction for the great response to the holding of this Ministerial Conference. The presence of such distinguished visitors and the active participation of Member-Countries in the preparatory stages are a guarantee for the successful result, which we all expect.
Our group faces an immense challenge and has a formidable fight to pursue: to foster the construction of a new order in international relations, based on democracy and equity. We the Member-States, without exception, must all contribute every ounce of our strength to this noble enterprise.
If we join our efforts around this urgent cause, we will be able advances, with a firm step, along the path of the new century. I am confident that the political capacity of the Non-Aligned Movement will allow us to take part, from a position of strength, in the design of a world order of equity, transparency and solidarity, which will regulate globalization and help to distribute its benefits.
As Argentinas Ernesto Sabato wrote, "Solidarity acquires a decisive place in this leaderless world which excludes difference. When we make ourselves responsible for out neighbours grief, we acquire a purpose in life which places us above the fatalities of history."
Thank you very much.
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Statement of the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Colombia, Mr. Guillermo Fernandez De Soto, upon closing the XIII Ministrial Conference of the Movement of Non-Aligned Countries, Cartagena, April 8-9, 2000
Your Excellency, Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma,
Minister of Foreign Affairs of South Africa
We have completed our tasks. For Colombia, as the host country for the XIII Ministerial Conference of the Non-Aligned Movement, it is a particular honor to share with you the great satisfaction derived from the successful results achieved in our work.
When Colombia accepted the responsibility of serving as the headquarters for this Ministerial Conference, we did so with pride and conviction, and fully aware of the enormous challenge that presenting a renewed and solid political platform posed to the countries of the Movement upon starting a new millennium. Today, we can give a positive report on this accomplishment.
The documents adopted at this important meeting, the constructive and united spirit that prevailed during the deliberations, and the high level of political mobilization observed are a testimony to the Movements vitality and its new projection within the international scenario.
With the mandates approved, the Movement now has clear guidelines for continuing in its struggle to build a more humane and equitable global order and promote greater democratization of international relations. Hereinafter, our voice shall be heard with renewed attention.
Honorable Ministers and Heads of Delegation,
We have reaffirmed our conviction in the principles of non-alignment. The Movement has come out strengthened and with greater confidence to be present and exert its political power within the international arena.
Upon examining the impact of globalization, we have concluded that issues such as trade liberalization, human rights and environmental problems, among other things, have implications that go beyond borders and are exercising a notorious influence on the traditional concepts of international politics. And we have understood within the Movement that international cooperation and political dialogue are the necessary solution for facing the reality of these phenomena in a way that is compatible with the principles of our group.
Likewise, we have reiterated that in order to reduce the risks of marginalization in a world caught up in a rapid globalization process, it is necessary to promote active and broad participation in decision-making processes at an international level. Without such participation, our vulnerability will be greater. The Movement must insist on making global decision-making more representative and transparent. This is a prerequisite for promoting a global system of comprehensive, fair and non-discriminatory economic relations.
The Conference has given the Troika of the Movement, comprised of South Africa, Bangladesh and Colombia, a clear mandate to continue promoting dialogue with the developed countries, particularly with a view to conveying the Movements issues of interest to the next G-8 Summit to be held in Okinawa, Japan in July of this year. On that occasion, the Movement shall insist on the need for said dialogue to be based on mutual benefits and interests, shared responsibilities and genuine interdependence.
In that regard, we shall take the initiative so as to keep the results of the recent Ministerial Conference of the World Trade Organization from translating into additional deterioration of the multilateral system in the economic forum. For this purpose, we have defined the basic criteria that must orient future commercial negotiations, taking into account the interests of the Non-Aligned Countries and other developing countries.
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We shall also give the same priority to the high level meeting summoned by the United Nations General Assembly for the year 2001, in order to address the issues related to development financing. We shall promote that event as a valuable opportunity for discussing the formulas that make it possible to cover the needs of the developing countries and we shall also continue to further the reform of the international financial system.
We have agreed that the Movement shall continue to exercise all its political influence so that the international community seek out solutions to the expectations and aspirations of thousands of millions of people that inhabit the planet who are living in conditions of backwardness and despair. We understand that that commitment is a necessary condition for our group to be truly significant to the peoples of the developing world. But, above all else, because it is the only organization that can allow them to make their voice heard within the global scenario.
That is why we have expressed our commitment to contributing to accelerating the implementation of the commitments assumed in the Summit on Social Development and ensuring that the revision of said implementation, that will take place in June of this year, fully coincide with the purposes of eradication of poverty, generation of employment and social integration. Likewise, we shall also make sure that the Special Session of the United Nations General Assembly on the subject of Women, which is also to be held in the middle of the year, translate into effective measures for incorporating the perspective of gender into the multiple dimensions of development.
Based on this Ministerial Conference, we, the countries of the Movement, shall intensify our political action to insist that the process of nuclear proliferation be reverted and the world head towards true disarmament, especially in the case of mass destruction weapons. All of the States, regardless of their condition and size, have not only the interest but also the commitment to contributing to the elimination of the dangers of a nuclear conflict.
The elimination of mass destruction arms and the setting of specific deadlines for said purpose, as well as the termination of the growing use of sophisticated conventional weapons, are essential requirements that the Movement will continue to demand in order to give true stability to international peace and security.
To this will be added our efforts to revert the illegal trafficking of small arms. The Movement shall play an active part in the Conference summoned by the United Nations on this issue. We shall promote the most extensive participation of the Non-Aligned Countries and other Member States of the United Nations in that important Conference, as well as during its preparatory process.
We have also promised to reinforce the Movements presence in the fight against illegal drugs, emphasizing the need to reduce their consumption in the buyer countries. The Movement has insisted on the need to promote new alternatives for development that offer income opportunities to the most vulnerable populations and thus discourage illegal drug production.
In addition, the deliberations that begin this Monday, April 10 in Vienna within the framework of the Tenth Congress of the United Nations on Crime Prevention and Treatment of Delinquents will be a good opportunity for us, the Non-Aligned Countries, to reaffirm our commitment to combat transnational crime, in accordance with the mandates agreed to at this Cartagena Conference. In this regard, we must promote the broadest possible participation of the Movements member countries in the negotiations aimed at the adoption of the International Convention against Transnational Organized Crime.
With the results achieved at this Ministerial meeting, we have been able to update the Movements vision regarding the new concepts of international peace and security. This will give us a greater capacity of proposal so that such concepts be compatible with the reduction of tensions and conflicts. It is in this spirit that we have exhaustively gone over international peace issues, including regional situations that affect Movement countries. In its statements, the Conference has formulated new recommendations and has given all of its support to the efforts to be undertaken for peacefully solving existing disputes.
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Within this context, we must underline the request formulated by the Non-Aligned Movement here in Cartagena so that all of the parties involved in a conflict ensure due respect and adherence to international humanitarian law, in such a way as to exclude the civilian population from any act of violence or other actions that violate its rights and liberties.
The Movement shall insist that any new orientation on security-related issues must be translated into the acknowledgement of the role of the United Nations as an institution created for peace and development. The UNO must be empowered to fully play its role of regulator of international relations, as the only institution with the possibility of ensuring equality among the States. It is, in addition, the only institution where democratic principles can be fully applied.
Recently, the credibility and effectiveness of the United Nations in relation to conflicts between States has been questioned. In the Movement, we have a clear perception of what we want from the United Nations. In that regard, we shall maintain a firm position so that the Security Council preserve its main responsibility in maintaining international security and peace, consulting the principles of democracy, representativity and transparency.
We shall give top priority to our participation in the Millennium Summit and the United Nations Millennium Assembly. There we will have the opportunity to articulate our vision on the challenges of this new era. We shall present specific proposals for projecting the role of the United Nations into the 21st century, particularly in the fields of peace, security, disarmament, development and the eradication of poverty.
Honourable delegates, ladies and gentlemen,
In a few hours the South Summit shall begin in Havana. With it, undoubtedly, the path will be left opened to a new era of greater equity in economic relations. The Summit will be a unique opportunity for addressing key aspects regarding globalization, North-South relations and South-South cooperation, including the issues of know-how and technology. Recent developments in the global economy have again made evident the imperious need for the developing countries to arrange a positive agenda. In this sense, the Havana Summit shall be a historical milestone.
Now, at the end of this intense activity, allow me to express the satisfaction and immense gratitude of Colombia for your diligent performance, for your dedication throughout these days of arduous work.
Now, when we have entered the new millennium, the Movements decision to build a peaceful, prosperous and equitable world has found new impetus, a new reason for being. This is our greatest contribution to the Movements cause, our contribution to the significant and relevant role we expect it to play in the international scenario.
With this Conference, we have been able to write a valuable page in the history of the Movement and in the tremendous task that we must pursue in a resolute and constructive manner in order to consolidate our common action to the benefit of peace, justice and democracy.
We look forward to meeting again soon and hope that your stay in Cartagena will instil in you the best memories of Colombia, its image, its history, and its people.
Thank you very much.
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Your Excellencies, Honourable Ministers, Ambassadors, Distinguished Delegates
Eighteen months ago, the Summit of the Non-Aligned Heads of State or Government meeting in Durban, South Africa, unanimously adopted a declaration in which we proclaimed: "We now stand on the threshold of a new era. An era that offers great opportunity, yet poses a special danger for the developing world".
Our Movement further declared, "We see powerful processes that continue to marginalise many countries of our Movement. We see the twin forces of globalisation and liberalisation having adverse social and economic consequences, which add to the burdens of everyday life in much of the South".
Today, we are here at this great and historic city of Cartagena to review how far our Movement has come since Durban. African delegations have arrived here via Cairo where they participated in a historic Summit of African Heads of State and their European counterparts. This is a further step to enhance our regional dialogue with the North. We emphasized that the struggle against poverty is also a struggle against genocide, war and instability. There has to be a common commitment and obligation to end poverty and underdevelopment among the countries of the North and South. In our dialogue with the North, we have to stress the urgent need of debt relief for the developing countries. This is just some of the reason it is in the interest of the North to enter into partnerships for development. There has to be a strategic partnership on issues of trade and development.
From here we go to Havana, Cuba where the South Summit will provide us with a unique opportunity to act in solidarity in addressing the problems facing the South. We have to reflect on the major economic challenges facing the developing countries in the context of globalisation which continues to threaten the sovereignty of states.
In meeting the many challenges facing our countries, we must remain inspired by the many successes of the past which made our Movement such a pivotal factor in international relations. We must remind ourselves that our Movement always mobilised for causes which were concerned with humanity as a whole. We were always committed to the great moral issues of our time. We should continue to be at the forefront in highlighting global problems and articulating action-oriented, achievable solutions. We must become more effective in projecting our Movement as responsible and an equal partner in the search for global solutions.
Our Movement has to debate the issues of importance, not only of importance to the South, but also to the North, such as the issue of the reform and the role of the United Nations. We need to define humanitarian intervention, otherwise others will define it for us.
However, the challenge for us to guard against delays in formulating a coherent response within the Movement. We need to ensure that we are able to find common ground on political and economic issues that are of shared concern to all our Members. Speaking at the opening of the NAM Ministerial Meeting last September in New York, the Chairman of our Movement President Thabo Mbeki asked: "Are we taking up the challenges of today, or have we allowed ourselves to be transformed into an organization comprising Governments that periodically speak with one voice at Conferences and Summits, yet act unilaterally without reference to agreed policies after that? Can we really be effective if our procedures and methods of work only allow us to move at the pace of the slowest, or the most difficult Member of the Movement? Clearly none of us can accept that inaction should characterize the nature and practice of the Movement". This question has been asked, we have not yet answered it. How do we address issues that come in between Summits.
As Chair, we are conscious of the challenges that lie ahead. We realise that unity is essential if our Movement is to impact on global events. At the same time, we know that the rapid changes in the political and economic environment place added importance and urgency upon us to come up with solutions that meet the new challenges.
South Africa is at its halfway mark in serving as the custodian of this Movement. We shall continue to consult the Membership through the various mechanisms at our disposal and work to enhance the dynamic role for the Movement in the 21st century. At this first meeting of NAM Ministers in the new millennium, we have the opportunity to chart a course and lay the foundation that will see our Movement continue to be relevant in the search for solutions in a world that is changing very fast.