There are Good Prospects for Co-operation of GUAM and Council of Europe: GUAM Secretary General
France, Strasburg, 21 March /corr. Trend A.Maherremli / Trend interview with the GUAM Secretary General, Valerie Chechelashvili, as a result of consultations between GUAM and the Council of Europe which took place in Strasburg on 19 March.
- How do you assess the consultations between GUAM and the Council of Europe which took place in Strasburg?
- I positively assess it and want to express gratitude to the Chairman ( Azerbaijan chairs GUAM) for the initiative to establish co-operation between GUAM and the Council of Europe. Particularly, I want to express gratitude to our representatives - GUAM member-countries in the Council of Europe - who carried out intensive preparation works to well present us.
I think that it was an interesting meeting. We represented GUAM in a way that it undoubtedly will help its publicity and visibility in the international relations because the composition of the Council of Europe participating countries is very important for us. They all, at least most of them, are our potential partners. We consider that we have good prospects where it is possible to achieve serious synergic effect of co-operation with the Council of Europe in strengthening democratic institutions, ensure human rights, developing humanitarian contacts and other several spheres of co-operation. Further, meetings will take place on the concrete directions of co-operation. I think that we will reach an agreement that the Secretariats of the Council of Europe and GUAM devise and submit us a co-operation program. From our side, we will send the program to the national co-ordinators and the Secretariat of the Council of Europe to its relevant organization. Thus, we can find beneficial and concrete co-operation projects.
- How do you see the prospects of co-operation between GUAM and the Council of Europe?
- I am sure that not only the Council of Europe needs GUAM, but also GUAM needs the Council of Europe. Because we will become an organization well instructed and analyzed with its co-operation mechanisms and tools which can assist the Council of Europe in realizing its own co-operation programs and projects. Therefore, I see mutual benefits there. From our side, we are ready and open for co-operation with any organization who shares our Charter goals and targets. It will be well accepted by the Council of Europe as well.
- Recently the President of Moldova stated his interview with one of the Russian newspapers that his Country may leave GUAM due to its inefficiency. What is you reaction to this statement?
- I can say that all GUAM State Heads expect the organization to develop concrete co-operation programs and projects. It is not so easy to develop full-value co-operation on all directions within a short period. I understand the critics regarding large expectations from the organization. We do all the best so that GUAM becomes not only an authoritative organization in the system of international relations, but also an effective tool of multilateral policy for realizing national targets and goals of each State, including Moldova. We will continue this activity.
I hope that from its side, Moldova will also continue active participation in all programs and projects of GUAM, which is successfully developing. We will continue development of GUAM with the help of Moldova, especially in the working groups where it is co-ordinator (group for fighting against organized criminality and tourism co-operation development group).
- Did the consultations between the Council of Europe and GUAM focus on the settlement of 'frozen conflicts'?
- During his speech, the representative from Azerbaijan, Tofig Musayev, informed the Council of Europe about the common approaches which the GUAM countries formed with regards to the settlement of the conflicts. As long as our position is established based on the generally accepted principles and norms of international law, I think that this information will truly accepted by the Council of Europe.
- When will GUAM summit take place?
- The next meeting has been scheduled for 1-2 July 2008 in Tbilisi. The relevant official invitations will be sent, firstly the Presidents of GUAM countries and our partners - individual countries and organizations who we would like to see in Tbilisi summit. Of course, we will invite Secretary General of the Council of Europe, Terry Davis, as well.