Multilateralism strengthening stressed in Tehran meeting
The first meeting of national coordinators of the Group of Friends in Defense of the Charter of the United Nations at the level of deputy foreign ministers of the member countries was held in Tehran on Saturday.
The meeting covered important issues such as the effects of sanctions and ways out of them, dealing with unilateralism and diverse cooperation of member countries.
The Friends of the United Nations Charter group was formed in 2021 with the aim of preserving, promoting and defending the superiority and validity of the United Nations Charter with the participation of 19 countries, including the Islamic Republic of Iran.
At the end of the meeting, the members issued a statement. The full text is as follows:
1. We, representatives of Algeria, Angola, Belarus, Bolivia, Cambodia, China, Cuba, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Iran, the Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Nicaragua, the State of Palestine, the Russian Federation, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Syria, Venezuela, and Zimbabwe, in our respective capacities as National Coordinators of the Group of Friends in Defense of the Charter of the United Nations, met at the vice-ministerial level, in Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran, in order to discuss ways and means to advance our common endeavors aimed at preserving, promoting and defending the prevalence and validity of the Charter of the United Nations, both in its letter and spirit, and to further improve our coordination on issues of common concern and interest and on potential ways to move forward.
2. We recall the political declaration adopted on 22 September 2022, in New York, at the ministerial level, on the margins of the 77th Session of the General Assembly of the United Nations, and reaffirm once again our firm and full commitment to the Charter of the United Nations, including the purposes and principles contained therein, which represent the cornerstone for both preserving and promoting international peace and security, the rule of law, economic development and social progress, as well as human rights for all.
3. We reiterate our serious concern at continued attempts aimed at replacing the tenets enshrined in the Charter of the United Nations – which have been agreed upon by the entire international community for conducting their international relations – with a so-called “rules-based order”, that remains unclear, that has not been discussed or accepted by the wide UN membership, and that has the potential, among others, to undermine the rule of law at the international level.
4. We concur that double standards, coupled with selective approaches or accommodative interpretations of the provisions of the Charter of the United Nations, aimed at advancing political agendas of dubious nature, in clear contempt for international legality and in disregard for the common good or collective interests of the peoples of the United Nations, represent one of the major threats to the prevalence and validity of that universal and legally binding instrument that constitutes an exceptional achievement for humankind and a true act of faith on the best of humanity.
5. We call for the redoubling of efforts towards the democratization of international relations and the strengthening of multilateralism and of a multipolar system, based, among others, on mutual respect for the sovereignty and territorial integrity of all States, as well as on respect for the principle of equal rights and self-determination of peoples, for the rule of law, diplomacy, political dialogue, tolerance, peaceful coexistence, respect for diversity, inclusiveness, a culture of peace and non-violence, and due consideration for existing differences, all of which are essential for constructively and effectively working together on issues of common interest and concern.
6. We reaffirm that the United Nations remains a central and indispensable forum for addressing and advancing issues relating to international cooperation for economic development and social progress, peace and security, peaceful settlement of disputes, human rights, and the rule of law, on the basis of dialogue, cooperation and consensus-building approaches amongst States, and therefore remain fully committed to both its revitalization and the strengthening of its role, particularly at the current international juncture, in which the world needs much more solidarity and cooperation, as well as the diplomatic tools provided within its very own founding Charter.
7. We recognize the multifaceted crisis the world is currently facing, particularly its environmental, food, energy, economic, and finance dimensions, and emphasize that the solution to it passes through the urgent adoption of collective strategies and decisive measures that must necessarily be rooted on the purposes and principles of the Charter of the United Nations. In this regard, we call on the members of the international community to revive the spirit of unity, solidarity, cooperation, inclusivity, and mutual understanding that prevailed at the San Francisco Conference of 1945, which is needed today the most, in order to overcome threats and challenges that are common to us all alike, especially in the fields of peace, security, and development.
8. We express our concern at the potential impact of ongoing geopolitical tensions on the current global multifaceted crisis, and, therefore, call for respect for the sovereignty and independence of States, while rejecting any attempt at entrenching a Cold War-era mentality that is based on confrontation, the deepening of divisions and the imposition of disparate visions and agendas, in an attempt to divide our world into blocs. We highlight, in this context, the importance of respecting the decisions of States to abstain from participating in and to remain impartial to conflicts of any sort, in the procurement of the best interests of their peoples, confident that such an approach shall, in turn, continue to play an important role in the development of peaceful, friendly and mutually beneficial relations between the countries of the world, as well as in the strengthening of a multilateral system in which diversity is both embraced and respected while stressing the importance of ensuring that developing countries do not become a new field for geostrategic competition amongst major players.
9. We call on the Secretariat of the United Nations to strictly adhere to the founding Charter of the Organization, in particular the provisions of Article 100, in the performance of its duties, in accordance with their respective mandate, including when implementing General Assembly and Security Council resolutions.
10. We acknowledge that humanity lives in an indivisible security community in which one nation’s security is indivisible from the common security of a given region and that of the international community as a whole and that therefore no State can seek its own security at the cost of the security of another State or group of States. We consider, thus, that efforts shall be made towards the promotion of diplomatic endeavors aimed at establishing a fair, equal, sustainable, inclusive, and indivisible global security architecture, taking into account the legitimate security concerns of all countries, with a view to preventing the emergence of conflict or crisis situations that may put at risk global peace, security, stability, and humankind.
11. We express our categorical rejection of all unilateral coercive measures, including those applied as tools for political or economic, and financial pressure against any country, in particular against developing countries. We further express our serious concern at the continued imposition and expansion of such measures, which, among others, hinder the well-being of targeted populations, create obstacles to the full realization of their human rights, including their right to development, jeopardize international cooperation on aviation safety, and exacerbate global food insecurity, particularly at the current juncture, in which we face a multifaceted global crisis, with multiple dimensions, including as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. We reiterate our unwavering support and solidarity with nations and peoples subjected to unilateral and arbitrary approaches that violate both the purposes and principles enshrined in the Charter of the United Nations and the basic norms of international law, especially those that are part of our Group of Friends, and further renew our call for both their complete, immediate and unconditional lifting.
12. We, in accordance with international law, support any claim of States affected by unilateral coercive measures, including the targeted States, to compensation for the damage incurred as a consequence of the implementation and extraterritorial implications of such measures.
13. We express our unwavering support for and solidarity with the People and Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran, subjected to unilateral coercive measures, including unilateral sanctions imposed by certain countries, which violate the Charter of the United Nations and the rules and principles of international law, while seriously threatening the full enjoyment of their human rights and the realization of their right to development. We further call for the “lifting of all such unilateral measures against the Islamic Republic of Iran, Iranian nationals, and companies”, as recommended by the UN Special Rapporteur on the Negative Impact of Unilateral Coercive Measures on the Enjoyment of Human Rights in her report to the Human Rights Council on 17 August 2022 (A/HRC/51/33/Add.1), pursuant to her official country visit to the Islamic Republic of Iran from 07 through 18 May 2022.
14. We, in line with our historic and principled positions, express our unwavering solidarity with the people and government of the Republic of Cuba, which has heroically endured the negative impact of the economic, commercial, and financial blockade imposed on it by the United States for over sixty years, representing the single major impediment for its full economic and social development, and urge the government of the United States to immediately and unconditionally put an end to the blockade against Cuba. In this context, we welcome the resolution just adopted by the General Assembly of the United Nations on 03 November 2022, demanding, for the 30th consecutive occasion, the necessity of ending the blockade imposed by the United States against Cuba.
15. We renew the concerns previously raised in connection with the lack of compliance with the “Agreement between the United Nations and the United States of America regarding the Headquarters of the United Nations”, both in its letter and spirit, particularly with regard to the delays and/or denials of issuance and/or renewal of visas, travel and movement restrictions, banking issues and breaches of inviolability of diplomatic properties, and stress that the privilege of hosting the Headquarters of the United Nations shall not be abused and that bilateral differences shall not be exploited within the context of the implementation of relevant international legally binding obligations.
16. We express our serious concern at the continued proliferation of disinformation in digital platforms, including on social media, which are created, disseminated, and amplified by both State and non-State actors for political, ideological, or commercial motivations at an alarmingly growing scale. We stress that such trends not only undermine national sovereignty, in violation of the Charter of the United Nations, but also provoke manifestations of hate speech, racism, xenophobia, and stigmatization while inciting all forms of violence, intolerance, discrimination, and hostility. We emphasize, in this regard, the responsibility of all States in countering this trend, including the misuse of information and communication technology resources.
17. We, in line with our principled and historic positions, reaffirm our firm commitment to the just cause of Palestine, as well as our unwavering solidarity with the heroic Palestinian people in their ongoing struggle to achieve their inalienable rights, freedom, and justice. We further reaffirm our full and continued support to all efforts aimed at ending the grave injustice inflicted on the Palestinian people since the 1948 Nakba. We also remain committed to strengthening our efforts, including active engagement in international initiatives, aimed at ending the Israeli occupation, which constitutes an illegal colonial occupation and apartheid regime, and at achieving the independence of the State of Palestine, with East Jerusalem as its capital; the realization of the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people, including to self-determination and freedom; and a just and lasting solution to the Question of Palestine in all its aspects, including for the plight of the Palestine refugees, in accordance with international law, the relevant UN resolutions and the Charter of the United Nations. We further reaffirm our support for the long-overdue admission of the State of Palestine as a full Member State of the United Nations, which has been pending before the Security Council since 23 September 2011 and to enable it to take its rightful place among the community of nations.
18. We recognize that, since its establishment over a year ago, the Group of Friends in Defense of the Charter of the United Nations has made significant progress in advancing its objectives and in implementing its annual Programme of Work and, in this context, express our appreciation to the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela for its leadership and coordination efforts. In this regard, we reiterate our determination to redouble efforts aimed at positioning our Group of Friends as an active and key player at all relevant international forums and intergovernmental processes, including in the context of the General Assembly of the United Nations during its 77th Session, as part of our continued endeavors for ensuring full respect of and adherence to the Charter of the United Nations, in both its letter and spirit.
19. We reiterate our invitation to those members of the international community that are committed to the purposes and principles enshrined in the Charter of the United Nations, with the values of dialogue, tolerance and solidarity, as well as to an effective and inclusive multilateralism, in which all regions and all size of States are equal and engaged alike, to consider joining our Group of Friends and/or endorsing this and previous Political Declarations at their earliest convenience, as part of our collective efforts to advance our shared objectives and to ultimately keep delivering on the promise of the Charter of the United Nations for a more peaceful and prosperous world in which no one is left behind.
20. We also reaffirm our strong rejection and condemnation of the imposition of illegal sanctions, unilateral coercive measures against the People and Government of Nicaragua, and aggressions that have a negative impact on the development and prosperity of the country. In this sense, we demand the immediate end of such sanctions.
21. We express our serious concern at the current and growing threats against the Charter of the United Nations, including the implementation of practices that contribute in no way to addressing, through peaceful means and cooperation, the complex, emerging and common challenges faced by these days by humanity. Instead, they contribute to an increase in uncertainty, instability and tensions around the world.
22. We express our grave concern at the instrumentalization of the United Nations, in particular the Security Council, by certain states, to meddle in the internal affairs of a sovereign and full Member State of our Organization, the Islamic Republic of Iran, in violation of the Charter of the United Nations.
23. We express our appreciation and gratitude to the People and Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran for the excellent organization, hospitality, and hosting of the First Meeting of National Coordinators of the Group of Friends in the Defense of the Charter of the United Nations, on 05 November 2022, in Tehran.
24. We, at last, renew our firm determination to continue defending the Charter of the United Nations through concerted actions from the Group of Friends in Defense of the Charter of the United Nations and to stand by one another in this noble endeavor.