Eleventh Conference of Ministers of Defense of the Americas: Declaration of Arequipa

Bureau of Western Hemisphere Affairs
October 14, 2014

   

XI CONFERENCE OF DEFENSE MINISTERS OF THE AMERICAS

AREQUIPA – REPUBLIC OF PERU

FROM OCTOBER 12 TO 14, 2014

DECLARATION OF AREQUIPA

The Ministers of Defense and Heads of Delegation of the participating countries at the XI Conference of Defense Ministers of the Americas assembled in Arequipa, Republic of Peru, from October 12 to 14, 2014;

COMMITTED to the respect of the principles established in the Charter of the United Nations and the Organization of American States, as well as the Inter-American Democratic Charter, the Declaration on Security in the Americas and Declarations of the Conferences of Defense Ministers of the Americas and its principles;

RECALLING the Declarations of the Summits of the Americas and the Democratic Principles that inspired the creation of the Conference of Defense Ministers of the Americas and subsequent meetings;

BEARING IN MIND declarations adopted and ratified in plenary sessions of previous Conferences; and

CONVINCED that democratic debate and dialogue, conducted within the scope of the Conference, contribute to strengthening friendship and cooperation ties among Member States.

DECLARE:

  1. Their reaffirmation of the decision to continue consolidating the Americas as a zone of peace, advocating that the differences among the Nations be solved through dialogue or other ways of peaceful solution based on respect for the principles of International Law, National Legislations and principles and objectives of the Charter of United Nations and Hemispheric and regional bodies that contribute to peace. Additionally, they recognize the efforts made by the regional and sub-regional bodies and mechanism, in order to strengthen the levels of cooperation, dialogues and confidence among the States of the hemisphere, and to consolidate it as a zone of peace;
  2. Their recognition of the contribution of the military conferences of the Hemisphere in strengthening integration, stability and peace in the Hemisphere and ratifying the principles of political leadership of defense and the armed forces, one finds it necessary to coordinate the CAA, CNI, CONJEFAMER, by the XII CDMA. As such it is encouraged that the agendas of each specialized conference of the armed forces be adapted to the CMDA in order that each ministerial conference can receive the reports of the specialized conferences in the period before, and the CDMA guide future conferences in accordance with what was established in the final declaration;1
    To that end one agrees to the establishment of an Ad Hoc working group in an open and voluntary manner to prepare a proposal of alternatives for coordination between the conferences of Ministers of Defense of the Americas and the specialized conferences of the armed forces. This group will be constituted by the host country of the current conference and the host country of the XII CDMA and other voluntary collaborators, and will hold their first meeting in the first half of 2015;2
  3. Their willingness to continue strengthening the dissemination and integration of international humanitarian law and international human rights law in the doctrine, education, training, equipment and operational procedures of the armed and/or law enforcement forces as appropriate according to national legislations and international instruments signed and/or ratified by each State on that matter;
  4. Their interest with the proposal for the upcoming host country of the CDMA to coordinate a feasibility study aimed at the creation of a mechanism for voluntary information exchange on field hospitals that may be used in humanitarian assistance operations in the event of natural disasters, and on management and production of medicine; also suggests that the member countries of the CDMA encourage the organization of an information network, within their capabilities, in order to support preventative actions against epidemics, especially the current Ebola virus epidemic, in order to share best practices;
  5. Their renewed support to the participation of the Armed Forces, at the request of and conducted by civil authorities, for assisting populations affected by disasters, according to their respective national legislations;3
  6. Their interest in adopting measures that permit strengthening of the level of cooperation for regional search and rescue capabilities, under the competent authorities of each country as a way of preserving life, and for humanitarian assistance in the event of accidents and disasters that may occur both in the sea or land of the Americas,
  7. Their willingness to support the working group that will articulate the cooperation in regional search and rescue, promoting specific actions to improve the capabilities of search and rescue. This open and voluntary Ad Hoc working group will be comprised of the host country of the XII CDMA and by other voluntary collaborators during the first half of 2015;
  8. To promote, within the legal framework of each country and respecting national sovereignty, the exchange of experience in environmental best practices applicable to the Defense Sector, including eventual consequences of climate change, as well as specialized training and knowledge exchange;
  9. The importance of keeping the OAS informed on the developments and results of this Conference. In this regard, they urge the Pro Tempore Presidency of the XI CDMA to submit, at the end of its tenure, a report to the said hemispheric body, containing the progress, conclusions and suggestions arising during its tenure;
  10. Their acknowledgment of the progress made in the hemisphere in the field of humanitarian demining, in compliance with the provisions of the Convention on the Prohibition of the Use, Stockpiling, Production and Transfer of Anti-Personnel land Mines and on their destruction, and urge the governments of the region to continue with demining tasks aimed at achieving the removal and destruction of Anti-Personnel land mines in areas that are still affected by this scourge;
  11. Their satisfaction for the outstanding participation of those States in the hemisphere that contribute to United Nations Peacekeeping Operations and humanitarian assistance, through the deployment of contingents, observers and Staff Officers. In that sense, they emphasize the need to continue adapting those missions to current challenges so that they can operate in a multidimensional and integrated fashion, respecting the principles of the Charter of United Nations and the principles of peacekeeping: consent, impartiality, non-use of force, except in self-defense, and defense of the mandate. They also emphasize the importance of greater participation from troop contributing countries within United Nations competent organs related to these matters;
  12. Their acknowledgment of those States in the Hemisphere for their efforts in establishing binational and multinational peace forces ready to participate in United Nations peacekeeping operations. In this regard, they urge Member States to continue to consolidate these initiatives as a confidence-building measure and as a way of creating greater understanding among the armed forces of the states involved;
  13. Their willingness to continue in the process of greater participation of women in the armed forces pursuant to Resolution 1325 (2000) of the United Nations Security Council on Women, Peace and Security. In that sense, they encourage the armed forces of the respective Member Countries of the CDMA to coordinate efforts to ensure participation of women in the armed forces;
  14. Acknowledging the specific situations of each country and their respective national legislations, request the Pro Tempore Secretariat of the CDMA to facilitate the exchange of lessons learned by those countries that have experience in the use of their armed forces in matters of security to the members that require them;
  15. Their decision to contribute from their own competencies to the fight against drug trafficking and transnational organized crime, in accordance with international Law and National Legislations;
  16. Their satisfaction for the designation of Trinidad and Tobago as the host country of the XII CDMA to be held in 2016, and the offers of Panama and Mexico to be the host country of the XIII CDMA, to be held in 2018;
  17. Their gratitude to the Government and people of the Republic of Peru, conveyed through the Ministry of Defense of the Republic of Peru, for their hospitality, support and efficient organization of the XI Conference of Defense Ministers of the Americas;

Signed:

ANTIGUA and BARBUDA

ARGENTINA

BAHAMAS

BARBADOS

BELIZE

BOLIVIA

BRASIL

CANADA

CHILE

COLOMBIA

DOMINICA

ECUADOR

EL SALVADOR

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

GRENADA

GUATEMALA

GUYANA

HAITI

HONDURAS

JAMAICA

MEXICO

PANAMA

PARAGUAY

PERU

DOMINICAN REPUBLIC

SAINT KITTS AND NEVIS

SAINT VINCENT AND THE GRENADINES

SURINAME

TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO

URUGUAY

VENEZUELA

________

1 - Bolivia, Nicaragua and Ecuador do not agree the text

2 - Nicaragua does not agree with the text

3 - Nicaragua does not agree with the text