25 August 200820:34

Outcome of the Third Meeting of the Ministers for Foreign Affairs of the Conference on Interaction and Confidence-Building Measures in Asia

1239-25-08-2008

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PRESS RELEASE

A Meeting of the Ministers for Foreign Affairs of the Conference on Interaction and Confidence-Building Measures in Asia (CICA) took place in Almaty on August 25. Representatives of the foreign affairs agencies of Afghanistan, Azerbaijan, China, Egypt, India, Iran, Israel, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Mongolia, Pakistan, Palestine, Russia, Tajikistan, Thailand, Turkey and Uzbekistan took part. Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Alexei Borodavkin headed the Russian delegation.

President Nursultan Nazarbayev of Kazakhstan addressed the participants. The "CICA process" had been launched in 1992 at his initiative.

The Russian delegation drew the participants' attention to the recent tragic events in Transcaucasia. Georgia's actions against South Ossetia were described as an act of military aggression that had entailed numerous casualties, among them Russian citizens and peacekeepers. It was noted that only thanks to the intervention of Russia, which had forced Georgia to peace, had it been possible to stop the criminal war unleashed by Tbilisi, a war aimed at the physical destruction of the South Ossetians. Gratitude was expressed to the CICA member states that rendered support to Russia and are providing humanitarian aid to South Ossetia.

The final Declaration of the meeting sets out the concerted approaches of member states toward the formation of a contemporary multipolar world pattern on the basis of the supremacy of international law, with the UN playing a central role. It emphasizes the inadmissibility of attempts to ensure one's own security at the expense of the security of other member states. Special attention was paid to the practical realization of the previously elaborated CICA confidence-building measures between member states and to stepping up joint efforts in the struggle against the threats of terrorism and drug trafficking emanating from the territory of Afghanistan. The Conference's positive contribution to the creation of favorable conditions for the development of many-sided cooperation on the Asian continent was noted.

The ministers spoke out in favor of expanding cooperation in the economic, humanitarian and environmental fields. They stressed the role of Russia as the CICA coordinator for assistance to small and medium-sized businesses.

A confirmation of our active support of the CICA process was the decision of the Russian Federation announced in Almaty to allocate a voluntary lump-sum contribution of 100,000 US dollars to the Conference Secretariat budget in 2009.

Following debate, a Convention on the Legal Capacity, Privileges and Immunities of the CICA Secretariat and Its Staff and a Protocol amending the Agreement on the Secretariat were approved, along with a report on the results of work done and on further practical steps to build up interaction in the framework of the Conference.

The Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, and the United Arab Emirates became new members of the Conference. Qatar joined the CICA as observer.

There were adopted a number of decisions on organizational matters relating to the Secretariat's work.

August 25, 2008

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