20-12-2013

PAM discusses 2014 priorities with UN Secretary General during New York high level mission

PAM discusses 2014 priorities with UN Secretary General during New York high level mission

A High level delegation from the Parliamentary Assembly of the Mediterranean, led by PAM President, H.E. Senator Francesco Maria Amoruso (Italy), visited New York between 3-7 December 2013, during which meetings were held with UN Secretary General, H.E. Ban Ki-moon, other high ranking UN Officials, and Permanent representatives to the UN from Russia and Senegal. Ambassadors and diplomats from missions based in Malta were later briefed by PAM Secretary General, Amb. Sergio Piazzi, on the outcome of the PAM initiatives for the MENA region during 2013.

In New York, the meeting with the UN Secretary General, which was originally scheduled to take 20 minutes, lasted for more than 45 minutes. H.E. Ban Ki-moon shared with the PAM delegation the UN’s role in the region and expressed his satisfaction for the close cooperation with the Parliamentary Assembly of the Mediterranean in humanitarian assistance matters and confidence building in the various areas of crisis, including Syria and Western Sahara. On the other hand, the UN Secretary General was also briefed by the different members of the PAM delegation on the situation on the ground in the respective countries.
 
“On the Middle East, PAM is determined to continue its efforts through its well established Parliamentary network in Israel, Palestine and neighboring countries to facilitate all confidence building measures needed to support the Peace Talks, and to assist in the protection of the civilian population and the distribution of humanitarian aid in Syria”, the PAM President commented.

In particular, PAM will also work closely with the UN Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People, in order to organize the second joint UN-PAM International Meeting in Support of Israeli-Palestinian Peace, following the one held in Malta in February 2010. A requested to this effect was made by H.E. Amb. Abdou Salam Diallo, Chairman of the Committee, on the occasion of the meeting held with the PAM delegation, following the success of the first meeting.
 
PAM also agreed with UN DPA officials to work with both the Israeli and the Palestinian Governments and Parliaments to further promote confidence building measures at the citizens’ level. “This will help in exerting positive pressure on the two sides, especially now that the Peace talks have entered a new strategic phase”, PAM Secretary General underlined.

With regards to the Syrian crisis, in New York, PAM reiterated its determination to build on the strong ties established throughout the year with the Syrian Parliament, at facilitating furthermore the deliverance of humanitarian assistance inside Syria. The issue of fund raising initiatives and concrete financial support to the UNRWA and OCHA humanitarian missions in the Syrian neighboring countries, where millions of families have sought and found refuge, shall remain on top of PAM’s Action Plan for the 2014, which will be presented and discussed at the presence of parliamentarians from the Mediterranean and beyond, on the occasion of the 8th Plenary Session in Marseille, France, on 20-22 January 2014. Likewise “PAM is committed to increase its efforts is support of the role of UN-LAS Special Envoy for Syria, H.E. Lakhdar Brahimi, and of the political solution hoped for at the Geneva II meeting to be held on 22 January 2014”, President Amoruso said during a Press Conference at the UN Headquarters.

With reference to the Arab Spring countries, PAM was encouraged by the UN Secretary General and his colleagues to organize, at the beginning of next year, missions to Cairo and Tripoli, for direct talks on the political developments and to offer PAM’s Parliamentary diplomacy as an efficient instrument to facilitate the transition both countries are going through.

In the socio-economic sphere, PAM and the UNDP have agreed, during the high level meetings in New York, to work on developing the current relations into a structured cooperation based on a Memorandum of Understanding, in which priority areas according to the requirements of the countries in the MENA region, are defined and tackled.  Sectors already identified include good governance, including parliamentary activity, youth employment and capacity building projects.

PAM and the UN Alliance of Civilisation have also agreed on pushing forward the existing bilateral cooperation, based on the MoU signed between PAM and AoC earlier this year. Ethnic stability and inter-religious dialogue in the Middle East region are among the fields that PAM and AoC will undertake in 2014, considering also the escalation in tension against the Christian minority in Syria and other countries of the region.

PAM will also facilitate contacts between the AoC and the Vatican, in order for the latter to consider joining the AoC group of friends. PAM has also been requested to coordinate with Knesset a visit by the AoC to Jerusalem in 2014.

PAM’s round of talks in New York has laid the foundations for a number of key initiatives and events for 2014, aimed at consolidating and further strengthening the work of the international community in the Mediterranean region. PAM has established itself as a key actor not only on its own platform, but also as a bridge where traditional and soft diplomacy are exploring further grounds for cooperation, which can lead to concrete results towards peace, stability and security in the region. The Mediterranean is, historically, a dynamic and turbulent stage for multicultural forces, whose future lies exclusively in a process of continued dialogue and mutual respect.//


Photo caption: PAM delegation meets UN Secretary General (from left)

Hon. Ognjen Tadic, Member of the House of Peoples of the Parliamentary Assembly of Bosnia and Herzegovina
Hon. Mohammed Abu El Enein, PAM Honorary President, former member of the Egyptian Parliament
Sen. Francesco Maria Amoruso, PAM President and Secretary of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the Italian Senate
H.E. Ban Ki-moon, Un Secretary General
Amb. Sergio Piazzi, PAM Secretary General
Sen. Lhou Lmarbouh, PAM Vice President and member of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the Moroccan Senate
Hon. Pedro Roque Oliveira, PAM Vice Presidency and Member of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the Portuguese Parliament
Hon. Majallie Whbee, PAM Honorary Member, former Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of Israel
Hon. Justyne Caruana, PAM Rapporteur on the Middle-East and Member of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the Maltese Parliament

 

LINK TO MEDIA GALLERY


MEDIA INFORMATION: 62/2013
ISSUED ON: 20.12.2013

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