2nd Summit of the Organization for Democracy and Economic Development - GUAM in Baku on June 18-19
Azerbaijan & Ukranian Embassies in Seoul
1. Overview GUAM is a regional grouping of four states which includes the Republic of Azerbaijan, Georgia, the Republic of Moldova and Ukraine, founded as a political, economic and strategic alliance aimed at overcoming common risks and threats and strengthening their independence and sovereignty.During the years of cooperation GUAM became an important structure based upon common values of recognition of norms and principles of international law, including respect for sovereignty, territorial integrity, independence, non-interference to internal affairs and inadmissibility of foreign military presence on the territory of other states, cooperation and mutually beneficial partnership, mutual interests and ties with each other, solidarity in approaching and coordinating efforts with a view of overcoming threats to its security. Cooperation among delegations of Azerbaijan, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine started in 1996 in Vienna, Austria, at the CFE Treaty Conference, where four states issued joint statements and proposed common initiatives. Establishment of GUAM consultative forum consisting of four states (Azerbaijan, Moldova, Georgia, Ukraine) took place on October 10, 1997 in Strasbourg in the course of the Council of Europe Summit, during which a Joint Communique of the Presidents of Ukraine, Georgia, Azerbaijan and Moldova was adopted. In this document the Presidents stressed the necessity of developing quadrilateral cooperation for promoting stability and strengthening security in Europe on the basis of principles of respect for sovereignty, territorial integrity, inviolability of the state frontiers, democracy, rule of law and respect for human rights. The meeting of the Presidents of GUAM member states and Uzbekistan took place on April 24, 1999 in Washington within the framework of the summit meeting of the Euro-Atlantic Partnership Council, where Uzbekistan joined the abovementioned group of states, which began to be called GUUAM. According to the results of the GUUAM meeting Washington Declaration was adopted, where the Presidents noted that cooperation within the GUUAM is not directed against third countries or a group of countries and membership is open to any country which subscribes to the fundamental principles and goals of the GUUAM. On September 6, 2000 the meeting of the Presidents of GUUAM member states in the new format took place in New York in connection with the UN Millennium Summit during the fifty-fifth session of the UN General Assembly. At that meeting they adopted New York Memorandum that envisages intensifying cooperation within GUUAM by giving it multilevel character. To this aim, it was deemed expedient to convene regular summits at the level of Heads of States at least once a year, and meetings at the level of Ministers for Foreign Affairs at least twice a year. The Committee of National Coordinators (CNC) shall hold regular sessions on a quarterly basis. Creation of conditions for interagency and direct contacts between corresponding state bodies of GUUAM countries was defined as the main task of cooperation. Effective functioning of Europe-Caucasus-Asia transport corridor and development of its infrastructure was recognized as a top priority. On June 7, 2001 in Yalta the Summit of the GUUAM Presidents took place. It became a crucial event in formation and institutionalization of this regional organization as an international structure. Yalta Charter of GUUAM, signed by the Presidents in the course of the Summit, determines purposes, principles and directions of cooperation of the member states of the Organization. Grounds of the organizational structure of GUUAM laid down in the Charter have, in fact, fixed the existing mechanism of cooperation of the member states, efficiency of which was proved in practice. According to Yalta Charter, GUUAM presidency is carried out by the member states in alphabetical order during a period between the meetings of the Heads of States. The next meeting of the Heads of States of GUUAM members took place on July 20, 2002 in Yalta, where the Presidents decided to strengthen the GUUAM organizational legal basis and further develop interaction with the purpose of coming out to a qualitatively new, practical level of cooperation. The Heads of States signed the Declaration on Common Efforts to Ensure Stability and Security in the Region, in which they stated determination of their countries to provide political, legal and organizational basis for overcoming the challenges of international terrorism, separatism, intolerance and extremism. Signing of the Agreement on Cooperation among the Governments of GUUAM Participating States in the Field of Combat Against Terrorism, Organized Crime and Other Dangerous Types of Crimes has become an important step in this direction. During following GUUAM Yalta Summit on 4 July 2003 the participants of the meeting marked with satisfaction that for the last year cooperation in GUUAM framework has left to the stage of realization of concrete projects and programs in priority directions with attraction of the third states and international organizations. The special attention has been given to questions of ensuring effective and secure functioning of transport corridors, fight against terrorism, organized crime, arms and drug trafficking and illegal migration. At that meeting along with other important documents the Agreement on Establishment of the GUUAM Virtual Center for combating terrorism, organized crime, drug trafficking and other dangerous types of crimes and GUUAM Interstate Information Management System (IIMS) as well as Memorandum on Understanding among the GUUAM Participating States on Trade and Transport Facilitation (TTF) were signed. In 2002, Uzbekistan however announced that it planned to withdraw from the organization.On April 22, 2005 the next summit of GUUAM took place in Chişinău, Moldova. The presidents of Romania, Traian Băsescu, and of Lithuania, Valdas Adamkus, both participated as observers, as did the US Department of State special representative for Eurasian conflicts, Steven Mann, and the OSCE Secretary General Ján Kubiš. Ilham Aliyev, the president of the Republic of Azerbaijan, said after the summit: "Our organization is emerging as a powerful force, participating in resolving problems in the Caspian-Black Sea region" while the president of Ukraine, Viktor Yushchenko, said that a new page had been written in the history of the organization. On May 24, 2005 Uzbekistan gave an official notice of withdrawal from the organization to the Moldovan presidency, thus changing the group's name back to GUAM.On April 21, 2005, the GUAM countries found a common ground on several issues in the CIS Foreign Ministers Council that was held at that time in Moscow. The four GUAM countries made a proposal to discuss the "frozen conflicts" of Transnistria, Abkhazia, South Ossetia and Nagorno-Karabakh. Lastly the other three GUAM nations supported Ukraine's proposal to condemn the Holodomor, the 1930s famine in Ukraine, as a genocide. On June 19, 2007, presidents of Lithuania, Poland and Romania joined the leaders of GUAM member states at the GUAM summit in Baku. Participating at the summit were also the Vice-President of Bulgaria, Vice-Speaker of Estonian parliament, Minister of Economy of Latvia, and the high-level representatives of the United States, Japan, OSCE, BSEC, UNESCO, and heads of diplomatic missions accredited in Azerbaijan.
Ukraine (1997) Former members:
Uzbekistan (1999; withdrawn 2005) Observers:
Latvia 2. Fields of Cooperation Political cooperationGUAM countries agreed to strengthen and improve the mechanisms of consultations and coordination of actions within the framework of international organizations such as UN, OSCE, CE, NATO and EU and to promote actively the practice of joint initiatives and statements at various levels. Cooperation in the field of providing security of transport corridorsGUAM countries attach great importance to the issue of security and effective functioning of its transport corridors. The corridors of GUAM states play a crucial role in strengthening their sovereignty and independence, providing for their sustainable development and tightening links between these countries and western community. In the light of the aforesaid, GUAM has launched cooperation with some non-member states and organizations. As a result the joint "GUAM-US Framework Program on trade and transportation facilitation, ensuring border and customs control, combating terrorism, organized crime and drugs proliferation" has been concluded. Nowadays, in the scope of this Framework Program the two major projects are at the stage of implementation: 1) GUAM Trade and Transport Facilitation project and 2) project on establishment of the GUAM Virtual Center on combating terrorism, organized crime, drug trafficking and other dangerous types of crime (VC) and Interstate Information Management System (IIMS). Cooperation in the field of fight against terrorism and organized crimeThe fight against terrorism and other illegal activities as well as security of energy and transport corridors remain the major issues on GUAM agenda. These days GUAM efforts are underway to build an effective mechanism for counter-terrorism cooperation and coordination based on common values and interests. Its two main projects, implemented under the above-mentioned GUAM-US Framework Program, are the "Project on Establishment of the GUAM Virtual Center for combating terrorism, organized crime, drug trafficking and other dangerous types of crimes" and the "Project on Creation of the GUAM Interstate Information Management System (IIMS)." It should be noted that Azerbaijan's success in counter-terrorism activities has brought to its role as a coordinator of the GUAM Working Group on Fight against terrorism, organized crime and drug trafficking. 2.2. Economic cooperationThe four states confirmed their commitment to the continuation of economic reforms aimed at developing democratic societies, free markets and the active integration of their countries into the global economy. Nowadays, the GUAM states cooperate on creating of the Free Trade Area based on equality and mutual benefits for its participating states and implementation of the GUAM Trade and Transport Facilitation project. 2.3. Cultural cooperationTaking into consideration the vast cultural heritage of the GUAM countries, their input into the world civilization and wide prospects of the GUAM initiative for creation of the Europe-Caucasus-Asia cultural corridor, the GUAM states have signed Protocol on Cooperation in the Field of Culture within the Framework of GUAM for 2002-2005. Moreover international conference "East-West Inter-cultural dialogue among the states of GUAM: creation of Europe-Caucasus-Asia cultural corridor" took place in Baku on 9-10 June 2003. In joint declaration adopted according to the results of the meeting, the conference participants stressed the need for the development of multilateral cultural cooperation through implementation of concrete projects.
3. Organizational structure The supreme body of GUAM is the annual meeting of the Presidents of GUAM member states. The executive body of GUAM is the Council of Ministers for Foreign Affairs of GUAM states. The working body of GUAM is the Committee of National Coordinators (CNC) of GUAM consisting of coordinators, one from each GUAM member state. The Information Office of GUAM in Kyiv is charged with carrying out functions of informational support of the National Coordinators of GUAM, state and non-state structures of GUAM Participating States in realization of cooperation in different spheres. Coordination of cooperation between GUAM countries on the branch level is laid upon seven Working Groups, that is for energy; transport; trade and economics; information technology; culture, science and education; tourism; fight against terrorism, organized crime and drug trafficking.
The Seoul Times
Shinheungro 25-gil 2-6
Yongsan-gu, Seoul, Korea
Office: 82-10-6606-6188 Email:firstname.lastname@example.org
Copyrights 2000 The Seoul Times Company ST Banner Exchange