G8 FOREIGN MINISTERS' MEETING
(KYOTO, JUNE 27, 2008)
G8 Foreign Ministers met in Kyoto on June 26 and 27 to discuss a range of global and regional issues. The meeting exchanged views on the situation in Afghanistan and Zimbabwe - on which we have issued a separate statement respectively - Pakistan, the Middle East, Iran, North Korea, Myanmar and Sudan among other issues.
Foreign Ministers reiterated the G8's full support for the ongoing Israeli-Palestinian negotiations with a view to reaching an agreement by the end of 2008 on the establishment of a viable Palestinian state in the West Bank and Gaza and an end to the conflict. We call on all parties to refrain from any action that would undermine the negotiations and to implement their Road Map obligations, such as freezing all settlement activities and ending all acts of violence, terrorism and incitement. We also emphasized the importance of improving the situation on the ground and call on the parties concerned to take positive steps to that end including those on facilitating movement and access. We welcome the truce in Gaza that came into effect recently and call for its observance. We remain committed to continuing to provide assistance to the Palestinians, including those in Gaza, and helping to strengthen the Palestinian institutions and call on other donors to do the same. We look forward to a comprehensive peace between Israel and its neighbors, and in that regard welcome the ongoing indirect peace talks between Israel and Syria under the auspices of Turkey. We support the statement of the Quartet made in Berlin on convening an international meeting in Moscow which is expected to lend support to the process launched in Annapolis. The Ministers also welcomed the recent political progress in Lebanon and reaffirmed the support for a sovereign, independent and democratic Lebanon. We call on all parties to comply with relevant UNSCRs and encourage them to rapidly proceed in the formation of the new government without resorting to violence.
Foreign Ministers expressed serious concern over the proliferation risks posed by the Iranian nuclear program and Iran's failure to comply with its international obligations under successive UNSCRs, including UNSCR 1803 adopted on March 3, 2008, as well as the fact that Iran has expanded its enrichment program. We strongly urge Iran to cooperate fully with the IAEA, in particular by answering all of the IAEA's questions without further delay, and to comply with its international obligations, in particular to suspend all enrichment-related activities. We remain committed to a diplomatic solution to the issue through the dual track approach and urge Iran to respond to the calls by the international community to engage in negotiations. In this regard, we support the efforts of China, France, Germany, Russia, the United Kingdom and the United States as well as the high-level dialogue by the Presidency with Iran to advance negotiations towards a peaceful solution of the Iranian nuclear issue. We call on Iran to respond to the updated incentives package in a constructive manner. We also urge Iran to act in a more responsible and constructive manner in the region, particularly in the context of the Middle East Peace Process and the stability of Iraq and Afghanistan.
Foreign Ministers reiterated the G8's firm commitment to supporting independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity of Iraq as well as Iraq's efforts for restoring security, promoting national reconciliation and human rights, and advancing economic reconstruction and foreign investment. We appreciate the outcomes of the Ministerial Conference of the Neighboring Countries of Iraq held in April and the Iraq Compact Annual Review Conference held in May. We condemn all acts of terrorism and sectarian violence and support the Iraqi government in fighting against these threats. We encourage all states, in particular Iraq's neighbors, to play constructive roles in achieving Iraq's stability and reconstruction through such measures as elevating diplomatic representations, reducing debts and working together for national reconciliation.
Foreign Ministers discussed the situation in Pakistan and shared the recognition that the stability of Pakistan is important for regional and global stability. We will strengthen our assistance to the democratically elected government to advance stability and economic development in Pakistan, including that to the Afghan-Pakistani border regions. We call on and will cooperate with the Pakistani government to press ahead with an effective counter-terrorism strategy and a robust effort to strengthen democratic institutions.
Foreign Ministers remain committed to achieving the verifiable denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula. We urge North Korea, in accordance with the Joint Statement of September 19, 2005 and UNSCRs 1695 and 1718, to abandon all nuclear weapons and existing nuclear programs as well as ballistic missile programs and return to full compliance with its NPT obligations. We continue to support the Six-Party Talks and welcome, though belated, North Korea's provision of a declaration as an important step toward achieving these goals. We stress the importance of verifying the declaration, look forward to an early agreement on the principles of verifying the declaration and urge North Korea to fully cooperate in the verification, as well as to swiftly disable all existing nuclear facilities. In this regard, we emphasize the importance of accelerating the Six-Party Talks toward the full implementation of the Joint Statement of September 19, 2005 including the abandonment of all nuclear weapons and existing nuclear programs by North Korea. We also strongly urge North Korea to take prompt actions to address other security and human rights/humanitarian concerns including the early resolution of the abduction issue.
Foreign Ministers remain committed to ensuring aid reaches those affected by Cyclone Nargis; we therefore call on the authorities of Myanmar to lift all remaining restrictions on the flow of aid and to improve access for foreign aid workers to the affected areas. At the same time, the Ministers expressed concern about the current political situation in Myanmar. We call on Myanmar to foster a peaceful transition to a legitimate, democratic, civilian government. We encourage the authorities of Myanmar to engage all stakeholders in an inclusive and transparent political process. In this context, we call on Myanmar to immediately release political detainees including Aung San Suu Kyi. We strongly support the UN Secretary General's good offices mission and urge Myanmar to cooperate fully with Special Adviser Ibrahim Gambari. We are prepared to respond positively to substantive political progress undertaken by Myanmar.
Foreign Ministers reiterated their deep concern about the deteriorating security and humanitarian situation in Darfur as well as the human rights violations throughout Sudan. We urge all parties to commit to an immediate ceasefire and reengage with the peace process. We continue to support UNAMID, encourage countries to provide assistance to the mission, and also urge the Government of Sudan to assist in expediting its full deployment. With regard to Darfur, we call on all parties concerned to abide by their obligations under the relevant UNSCRs; we would otherwise support further appropriate action in the UN Security Council. In this regard, we urge the Government of Sudan and all other parties to cooperate fully with the International Criminal Court in order to put an end to impunity for the crimes committed in Darfur. We call on Sudan and Chad to comply with the existing peace agreements, notably by implementing the Dakar agreement, and take steps to normalize relations. We recognize the important contribution of EUFOR deployed in Chad and the Central African Republic. We also call on the parties concerned to fully implement the 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement in good faith and reiterate our support for UNMIS. We remain committed to providing assistance for humanitarian as well as reconstruction purposes.
Foreign Ministers reaffirmed the G8's support for the efforts by the Co-Chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group and call on Armenia and Azerbaijan to exercise self-restraint and make serious efforts to reach an agreement on basic principles for a peaceful settlement of the dispute over Nagorno-Karabakh.
Foreign Ministers welcomed the steady progress of the Broader Middle East and North Africa (BMENA) Initiative, contributing to the socioeconomic development of the region based on the cooperation among the G8, BMENA and other countries, business and civil society. We look forward to the fifth "Forum for the Future" scheduled for this fall under the co-chairmanship of Japan and the United Arab Emirates.
Non-Proliferation and Disarmament Instruments
Foreign Ministers reiterated concern over the substantial dangers of the proliferation of WMD and their means of delivery. We are determined to undertake all efforts to strengthen all relevant multilateral non-proliferation and disarmament instruments, in particular to achieve a successful outcome of the 2010 NPT Review Conference. We welcome all nuclear disarmament efforts, notably the ongoing reductions of nuclear weapons that the nuclear-weapon States within the G8 have made so far, and call on all nuclear-weapon States to undertake such reductions in a transparent manner.
Peaceful Use of Nuclear Energy and 3S
Foreign Ministers emphasized the importance of ensuring safeguards (nuclear nonproliferation), nuclear safety and nuclear security (3S) as an indispensable basis for the sustainable development of nuclear power for peaceful use and stressed the pivotal role of the IAEA in this area. We agree on the need to strengthen our efforts to ensure 3S in nuclear energy infrastructure.
Foreign Ministers condemned in the strongest terms all acts of terrorism and reaffirmed the G8's commitment to counter terrorism, emphasizing the importance of the efforts in the framework of the United Nations including the implementation of the UN Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy and the relevant UNSCRs. We will strengthen capacity building for those countries requiring assistance to meet international counter-terrorism commitments in coordination with the UN and its relevant bodies.
Transnational Organized Crime
Foreign Ministers reaffirmed the G8's commitment to combat transnational organized crime in its ever more diversified forms, including by the ratification and effective implementation of the related conventions and in cooperation with the relevant bodies such as the UNODC. We also continue to assist capacity building efforts by countries strengthening their criminal justice system.
Foreign Ministers shared the view that the G8 have the special capability to reinforce individual and collective efforts in the field of peacekeeping/peacebuilding. Recognizing the importance of a comprehensive approach, we agree on the need to enhance the capacity for peacekeeping/peacebuilding worldwide in the areas of military, police and civilians.
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