Suggestions from the Personal Representative of the UN Secretary General, mr. Dag Nylander, to move forward with the Good Offices process
22 de June de 2017
Letter with suggestions to move forward with the Good Offices process sent by the Personal Representative of the UN Secretary General, mr. Dag Nylander.
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June 22, 2017
The Personal Representative of the Secretary General for Border Controversy between Guyana and the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, Mr. Dag Halvor Nylander, would be grateful if you would kindly transmit the letter attached to Her Excellency Delcy Rodríguez Gómez, People’s Power Minister for Foreign Relations of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela.
A copy of the letter is attached for your information.
I avail myself of the opportunity to reiterate to Your Excellency the assurances of my highest consideration.
Signed by Martha Doggett
Director a.i., Americas Division
Department of Political Affairs
Permanent Representative of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela to the United Nations
June 21, 2017
I have the honor to write to you to convey my sincere thanks for the welcome that your Government extended to me and my delegation and for the fruitful conversations we had during our visit to your country between June 5 and 8.
It seemed to me of great importance to be able to share with you my ideas and suggestions for moving forward with the good offices process with a strengthened mandate of mediation. As we discussed during my visit, and based on your preliminary comments, I have reviewed the guidelines for the negotiation process that include a series of mutual commitments that may serve to moderate our discussions as we move forward in the process. Attached to this letter you will find this working document.
I would also like to thank you for your letter of May 21, 2017, in which you suggest areas of collaboration for the development of confidence-building measures in the framework of the good offices process.
As we discussed, I would like to return to your country as soon as possible to continue our exchange on the elaboration of an agenda towards the resolution of the controversy, including specific elements for the discussion in relation to the central issue, as well as the measures of encouragement and trust.
I would like to confirm then that my fourth visit to Caracas will take place between June 26 and 28.
Delcy Rodríguez Gómez
People’s Power Minister for Foreign Relations
Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela
May I take this opportunity, Excellency, to assure you my highest and most distinguished consideration.
signed by Dag Nylander
Personal Representative of the Secretary General
Guidelines for the negotiation process
1. Negotiations will take place within the framework and will comply with the provisions of the Geneva Agreement.
Responsibilities of the Personal Representative of the Secretary General
2. The Personal Representative of the Secretary General must:
(a) maintain and demonstrate strict impartiality in his relations with the Parties;
(b) show absolute respect and understanding in his dealings with the Parties;
(c) Collaborate intensively with the Parties and offer his active assistance in the search for a solution acceptable to both;
(d) try to understand the interests, positions and points of view of the Parties and look for areas of possible agreement between them;
(e) seek to identify possible solutions to the controversy and formulate and present the proposals that he considers may help to reach a solution. These can address any relevant aspect of the bilateral relations between the Parties;
Responsibilities of the Parties
3. Parties must:
(a) make every effort to resolve the dispute in a peaceful and friendly manner;
(b) negotiate constructively and in good faith with the aim of reaching an early full agreement on the resolution of the dispute;
(c) conduct negotiations in a continuous, sustained and results-oriented manner, avoiding any delay;
(d) negotiate in a spirit of cooperation, mutual respect and understanding;
(e) seek to understand the interests, positions, and points of view of the other Party and be prepared to consider the possibility of making concessions to accommodate them;
(f) seriously examine, in good faith and without delay, the proposals or suggestions made by the other Party or by the Personal Representative of the Secretary General;
(g) when so requested by the Personal Representative of the Secretary General, present their position or pronounce complete, accurate and prompt information;
(h) extend their full cooperation to the Personal Representative of the Secretary General, including through a provision to hold frequent, regular and substantive meetings at both the highest and technical levels.
4. The Parties must also:
(a) refrain from any action or statement that may hinder or impede the peaceful and rapid solution of the dispute;
(b) exercise caution and moderation in dealing with all issues related to the negotiation process, in order to allow negotiations to be conducted in a favorable environment conducive to success;
(c) avoid public accusations against the other Party and the attribution of hostile motives to it;
(d) moderate the language and tone of their written communications and public pronouncements with respect to the other Party;
(e) make all possible efforts to ensure the concurrence of political parties and interest groups in their respective countries so that they do not contribute to aggravating the tensions either through their public statements;
(f) in the event that they receive a report of an incident allegedly caused by the other Party, communicate immediately with the counterpart – either through the Personal Representative of the Secretary General, or jointly with him – before reporting the counterpart or making public comments on the incident. The foregoing in order to determine what happened and the explanation thereof and to do everything possible, with the assistance of the Personal Representative, to verify the facts before making the matter public;
(g) in the specific context of negotiations, behave and express themselves at all times, orally and in writing, with courtesy, moderation, and mutual respect. No abusive or offensive language or behavior will be used.
Confidentiality of negotiations
5. Negotiations will be carried out in complete confidentiality.
6. The Parties and the Personal Representative of the Secretary General shall respect and maintain at all times the confidentiality of what is said and done (and also what is not said and is not done) in the course of the negotiations as well as the documents and materials that may circulate between the Parties, or communicated by or for them in that context.
7. Unless they are incorporated in a final and written agreement signed by the Heads of State or Government or the Ministers of Foreign Relations of both Parties, all the opinions expressed and statements, admissions and proposals made by any of the Parties or by the Personal Representative of the Secretary General, orally or in writing, will be, and at all times remain, confidential.
8. Only the Personal Representative of the Secretary General will make, when necessary and in consultation with the Parties, public statements on the state of the process. Unless otherwise agreed among themselves and with the Personal Representative, the Parties shall refrain from making public comments on the state of the process.
Unprejudiced nature of negotiations
9. Any proposal made by the Personal Representative of the Secretary General:
(a) will not be binding, and will be exclusively a recommendation;
(b) shall not have any effect, unless it is included in a final and written agreement signed by the Heads of State or Government or the Ministers of Foreign Relations of both Parties.
10. Neither Party shall have the right, in any other process or procedure, to invoke the opinions expressed or declarations, admissions or proposals made by the other Party or by the Personal Representative of the Secretary General.
11. Nothing that is said or done (or that is not said or is not done) during the negotiations, orally or in writing, will in no way harm the legal position of either Party, or create any right or obligation legal for it, or it will end any of its obligations, or it will end or exempt or limit the exercise of any right that it may possess, except if – and to the extent that – it can be incorporated into a final and written agreement signed by the Heads of State or Government or the Foreign Ministers of both Parties.