In a letter signed by Gabriel Salvia, Chairman of the Center for the Opening and Development of Latin America (CADAL), eight recommendations of foreign policy and human rights were presented to the Minister of Foreign Affairs, International Trade and Cult of Argentina, all oriented to the accomplishment of the strategic objectives established in Argentina's foreign policy, officially published at www.mrecic.gov.ar
These proposals are framed in the activities of the Area of International Promotion of Human Rights of CADAL, through the project Democratic Bridge, whose objective is to make international solidarity actions in support of the efforts of the democrats living in countries under dictatorships or advocating in the implementation of a foreign policy committed to human rights in the countries of Latin America.
Salvia pointed out to Minister Timerman that the Project Puente Democratico of CADAL is totally in accordance to the article he published and signed on January 23, 2004 in the magazine Debate where he was the director: "The past of Argentina puts us on the obligation of excercizing a role of leadership that very few countries can try to occupy. For instance, in the struggle agains human rights violations and in the active solidarity with those opressed. Since we have been victims we must not forget the current victims".
In consequence, from the Project Puente Democratico, CADAL sent the Argentine foreign minister the following petitions in terms of foreign policy and human rights:
-To establish a diplomatic relation of no more than a Business Attaché in the following Argentine embassies: Saudi Arabia, Cuba, China, Lybia and Syria. This measure implies a harsh critique in diplomatic terms because of the internal situation of human rights in those countries, and would be limitted to the mentioned cases since in other nations ruled by dictatorships Argentina has no embassy.
-To implement in the beforementions diplomatic offices of Argentina the practices of committed diplomacy acknowledging, supporting and protecting human rights activitis and democratic referents in thouse countries, including indepedent journalists and relatives of political prisioners. At the same time, it is recomended to invite them to an official reception on Argentina's National Day (May 25) and on the International Day of Human Rigths (December 10), in the first case understanding that the relations of a democratic government include a representative sample of other societies and not only the government officials.
-To train diplomats in the history and practices of committed diplomacy, with the objective that these actions are not limited to exceptional and heroic humanitarian acts, but so that they form part of an expressed instruction to all the officers acredited in countries where human rights violations are the rule.
-To request the Argentine Companies the signature of the Global Pact of Corporate Social Responsibility pomoted by Kofi Annan on 1999, specially those companies doing business with the following countries: Saudi Arabia, Belarus, North Korea, Cuba, Chad, China, Eritrea, Guinea, Equatorial-Guinea, Laos, Lybia, Myanmar, Syria, Somalia, Sudan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan. Among the principles of the Global Pact are, in first place, human rights: "In their influence area companies must: 1) Support and respect the protection of internationally recognized human rights, and 2) Be sure of not being accomplices of the abuse of these rights". This requirement should be a mandatory condition in order to receive official support of the programs of Fundación Exportar.
-To give publicity of the vote of Argentina in the election of the countries members of the UN Human Rights Council, including its authorities.
-To inform in the Detailed memory of the State of the Nation, the recommendations of Argentina when the Human Rights Council analyzes the Universal Periodic Exam on the countries more questioned by prestigious organizations such as Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch.
-To open the posibility to present nominations to the Human Rights Award Emilio F. Mignone to Civil Society Organizations in Argentina, legally recognized, and prioritize its award to those in countries where democratic freedoms are severely affected.
-Regarding the support that many dictatorships give the the Argentine claim of sovereignity in Islas Malvinas, it should not be conditioned in exchange of silence about human rights violations taking place in those countries.
Click here to download the complete letter in Spanish in PDF format (250kb)