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Summary: 28 October 2009, New York – Statement on behalf of the European Union by H.E. Mr. Anders Lidén, Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Sweden, at the General Assembly on "The situation in Central America: progress in fashioning a region of peace, freedom, democracy and development", United Nations
I have the honour to speak on behalf of the European Union.
The Candidate Countries Turkey, Croatia and the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, the Countries of the Stabilisation and Association Process and potential candidates Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, and the EFTA country Norway, members of the European Economic Area, as well as Ukraine, the Republic of Moldova, Armenia and Georgia, align themselves with this statement.
The European Union welcomes the Secretary-General’s report on the Activities of the International Commission against Impunity in Guatemala (CICIG) and the draft resolution contained in document A/64/L.6. put forward on behalf of Guatemala.
CICIG continues to be a positive force in Guatemala with its efforts to combat the prevailing situation of impunity in Guatemala. Through highly professional work CICIG is now accepted as a key player in security and justice matters in Guatemala. CICIG has entered a phase where high impact cases are in the process of being presented to the national courts, and a number of legal proceedings have been initiated. The EU fully supports the work of the Commission.
In spite of the positive result during the reporting period, where the Commission has made significant progress in key areas of its mandate, the EU would like to express its deep concern about the continued high levels of violence and impunity in Guatemala.
The EU urges the United Nations Secretariat to do its utmost to ensure that the operational challenges now faced by the Commission are appropriately addressed. The safety and security of the Commission’s staff are matters of particular concern.
Mr. President, let me conclude:
It is important that the work of CICIG is institutionalized by the Guatemalan state in order to create a long term sustainability after the end of its mandate. An independent judicial system is of crucial importance in combating the high levels of impunity in the country.
We ask all state institutions to take the decisions necessary to ensure the independence and effectiveness of Guatemala's judicial system and to work in close cooperation with CICIG. The EU also underlines the importance of the continued commitment of Guatemala to strengthen its own institutions.
The EU reiterates its support for the efforts of the Commission to assist Guatemala to maintain and strengthen democratic institutions, which are vital for peace and development in the country, and to build a state governed by the rule of law for all Guatemalans.
I would know like to turn to the situation in Honduras.
On 21st July, the EU Presidency, on behalf of the 27 member states, decided to restrict the contacts with the representatives of the de facto Government of Honduras and to suspend the bilateral development cooperation with the institutions of the de facto Government.
The EU stands ready to take further restrictive measures including targeting those members of the de facto government who are seen to be blocking progress on a negotiated solution based on the San José Accord.
The EU underlines again the importance of a rapid and peaceful negotiated solution to the severe crisis in Honduras and calls on all actors involved to work on the basis of the San José Accord, which in the EU’s view remains a key reference.
The EU urges the parties to continue negotiations in a constructive manner in order to reach the restoration of the constitutional order in the country, particularly ahead of elections in November.
The European Union firmly supports the initiatives undertaken by the Organisation of American States and its Secretary-General Insulza to facilitate the dialogue in view of a peaceful negotiated solution.
Thank you, Mr. President.