Question of Palestine home || Permalink || About UNISPAL || Search

Follow UNISPAL RSS Twitter


"As is" reference - not a United Nations document

Source: Euro-Mediterranean Parliamentary Assembly (EMPA)
28 November 2005




FINAL 28 NOVEMBER
CHAIRMAN’S STATEMENT
10TH ANNIVERSARY EURO-MEDITERRANEAN SUMMIT


On the 10th anniversary of the adoption of the Barcelona Declaration in November 1995, the leaders of the Euro-Mediterranean partnership pledge their renewed commitment to the objective of achieving a common area of peace, stability and prosperity in the Mediterranean region through ongoing dialogue, exchange and co-operation. They reaffirm that this objective requires a comprehensive approach to enhancing security, the just resolution of regional conflicts, strengthening democracy, the rule of law and respect for human rights, sustainable and balanced economic and social development, measures to combat poverty and exclusion, and the promotion of greater understanding between cultures and peoples.

The partners recognise that only determined action will enable the region’s young people to fulfil their aspirations of a better future.

They reaffirm their commitment to the principles and objectives of the Barcelona Declaration and re-emphasise the importance of co-ownership of the Process, which remains the cornerstone of the Euromed partnership. They reiterate that their partnership should serve as a framework for building regional co-operation and understanding.

The Barcelona Process provides an important contribution to promoting progress in the Middle East Peace Process and to furthering mutual understanding, even if it is not the forum in which a settlement will be reached. They call for the rapid and full implementation of the Road Map and encourage the parties to continue on the path of direct dialogue and negotiation in the fulfilment of the vision of two states, a safe and secure Israel and a viable, sovereign, contiguous, democratic Palestine, living side by side in peace and security. Final status issues have to be agreed by the parties.

Partners reaffirm their commitment to achieve a just, comprehensive and lasting settlement consistent with the Road Map and principles of the Madrid Conference including land for peace and based on relevant UNSC resolutions, including 242, 338 and 1397 and take note of recent regional developments and initiatives, including the Beirut Arab Peace Initiative.

Partners also call for the reinvigoration of efforts to promote progress in the Middle East Peace Process on all tracks, Palestinian, Syrian and Lebanese.

They recognise that major changes have occurred in the European Union and internationally since the Barcelona Declaration was signed in 1995. The EU has launched the European Neighbourhood Policy to reinforce and complement the Barcelona Process. The EU has also developed the European Security and Defence Policy on which a dialogue has been initiated with Mediterranean partners. They also recall Turkey’s special situation as a candidate country and a member of the Euro-Mediterranean Partnership.

The partners make the following collective commitments:

1) To strive collectively to achieve peace in the region.

2) To strengthen democracy, expanding participation in political life, public affairs and decision making, and further promoting gender equality. To enhance respect for all human rights and fundamental freedoms, including freedom of expression in accordance with their international obligations. To continue maintaining and ensuring the independence of the judiciary and expand access to justice to all. In this context the EU will establish a substantial financial Facility to support willing Mediterranean partners’ in carrying out their reforms, taking into account that successful reforms must develop from within the societies of the region.

3) To enhance the security of all citizens, particularly through more effective counter-terrorism policies and deeper co-operation to dismantle all terrorist activities, to protect potential targets, to manage the consequences of attacks, and to implement the Code of Conduct on Countering Terrorism they have agreed today. To condemn terrorism, wherever it is committed, without qualification and reject all attempts to associate any religion or culture with terrorism

4) In the context of the implementation of the chapter on political and security partnership:

to promote regional security by acting, inter alia, in favour of nuclear, chemical and biological nonproliferation through adherence to and compliance with a combination of international and regional non-proliferation regimes, and arms control and disarmament agreements such as NPT, CWC, BWC, CTBT and/or regional arrangements such as weapons free zones including their verification regimes, as well as by fulfilling in good faith their commitments under arms control, disarmament and non-proliferation conventions.

The parties shall pursue a mutually and effectively verifiable Middle East Zone free of weapons of mass destruction, nuclear, chemical and biological, and their delivery systems.

Furthermore the parties will consider practical steps to prevent the proliferation of nuclear, chemical and biological weapons as well as excessive accumulation of conventional arms.

Refrain from developing military capacity beyond their legitimate defence requirements, at the same time reaffirming their resolve to achieve the same degree of security and mutual confidence with the lowest possible levels of troops and weaponry and adherence to CCW.

Promote conditions likely to develop good-neighbourly relations among themselves and support process aimed at stability, security, prosperity and regional and subregional cooperation.

Consider any confidence and security-building measures that could be taken between the parties with a view to the creation of an “area of peace and stability in the Mediterranean”, including the long term possibility of establishing a Euro-Mediterranean pact to that end.

5) To contribute to achieving an area of shared economic development by: fulfilling the undertaking to achieve a Euro-Mediterranean free trade area by 2010; promoting broad-based equitable sustainable economic development and employment by inter alia pursuing economic reform, supporting efforts to promote domestic and attract foreign investment in the region, enhancing public financial management, strengthening the role of the private sector, improving legal systems, reinforcing industrial cooperation, enhancing equitable access to basic services; developing integrated transport, energy and telecommunications networks and encouraging the objective of establishment of a Euro-med Energy Market. To assess in December 2006 the possibility of the incorporation of an EIB majority owned subsidiary dedicated to the Mediterranean partner countries, on the basis of an evaluation of FEMIP’s performance. In this context they welcome the EIB’s intention to provide a further tranche of financial assistance to the region in 2006.

6) To develop the Mediterranean Strategy for Sustainable Development and review the implementation of all relevant regional agreements and action plans. To endorse a feasible timetable to de-pollute the Mediterranean Sea by 2020, while providing appropriate financial resources and technical support to implement it, using the Mediterranean Strategy for Sustainable Development and exploring possible areas for co-operation in this regard with UNEP.

7) To reinforce and support the efforts of all countries in the region to meet the Millennium Development Goals, particularly in the areas of education, vocational training and of gender equality, given the importance of human development and knowledge-based societies to modernisation. To significantly enhance national efforts to meet agreed targets for standards of education across the region, through developing educational systems, administration and management, with a particular focus on creating skilled workforces. In this context partners will increase significantly resources devoted to education.

8) To create an area of mutual cooperation on migration, social integration, justice, and security.

9) To strengthen the management of regular migratory flows in a comprehensive manner beneficial to the peoples of both shores of the Mediterranean, respecting migrants’ rights. To intensify cooperation on all aspects of illegal immigration between all parties concerned, including human trafficking, reflecting shared responsibility and solidarity.

10) To act jointly against racism, xenophobia and intolerance, stressing respect for all religions, rejecting extremist views which attempt to divide us and incite violence and hatred, and joining together to promote common understanding. To improve intercultural dialogue aiming at promoting understanding, building on our cultural heritage, including through the work of the Anna Lindh Euro-Mediterranean Foundation for the Dialogue Between Cultures, and in support of the UN Alliance of Civilisations.

11) To strengthen dialogue between governmental and non-governmental actors across the Euro-Mediterranean region, including through the promotion of dialogue between Parliamentarians within the Euro-Mediterranean Parliamentary Assembly, contacts between civil society associations, youth, trade unions, business and professional associations and cooperation between regional and local administrations.

The partners recall the application presented by the Islamic Republic of Mauritania to join the Euro-Mediterranean Partnership which will be given consideration in due time.

Expressing their renewed determination to drive the Process forward in pursuit of a better future for the youth of the region and fully implement the principles of the 1995 Barcelona Declaration, the leaders of the Euro-Mediterranean Partnership commit to work towards the objectives contained in the attached work plan over the next five years and to regularly review progress against these undertakings.

Follow UNISPAL RSS Twitter