The BRICS Foreign Ministers met on September 25, 2014 on the margins of the 69-th session of the United Nations General Assembly.
In the spirit of openness, inclusiveness and mutually beneficial collaboration, the Ministers reiterated the commitment of BRICS to comprehensive cooperation and a closer economic partnership.
The Ministers congratulated Brazil for organizing the VI Summit and noted that the Fortaleza Action Plan was being successfully implemented. They underlined that the decisions to establish the New Development Bank and the Contingent Reserve Arrangement taken at the Summit raise BRICS cooperation to a fundamentally new level. The Ministers reiterated the need to promptly convene a meeting to advance intra-BRICS economic, trade and investment cooperation, as stated in the Fortaleza Declaration.
While discussing the issues of the current UN agenda, the Ministers emphasized the following.
The Ministers recalled that 2015 is the 70th anniversary of the founding of the United Nations and of the end of the Second World War. They supported the UN to initiate and organize commemorative events to mark and pay tribute to these two historical moments in human history, and reaffirmed BRICS members’ commitment to safeguarding a just and fair international order based on the UN Charter, maintaining world peace and security, as well as promoting human progress and development. They also reaffirmed the need for a comprehensive reform of the UN, including the Security Council with a view to making it more representative, effective and efficient, so that it can adequately respond to global challenges.
They called upon the Israeli and Palestinian sides to do their utmost to preserve the ceasefire regime and to reach a steady truce in the Gaza Strip as well as to prevent further recurrences of the use of force. They highly appreciated the role played by Egypt in the cessation of hostilities.
The BRICS member states expressed their support for the immediate resumption of negotiations between the Israelis and the Palestinians based on international law and relevant United Nations resolutions with the final aim of an independent, viable and contiguous Palestinian State based on the 1967 borders and living side by side in security and peace with Israel and all its neighbours. They called upon the international community, in particular the United Nations Security Council, to intensify its efforts towards the realization of this goal.
They voiced concern over the grave humanitarian situation in Gaza. The BRICS member states supported Egypt and Norway’s plans to hold an international donor conference on the reconstruction of the Gaza Strip in Cairo this October. The Ministers underlined that the implementation of such initiatives should be backed by prompt steps towards lifting the blockade on Gaza and promoting Palestinian reconciliation in order to restore administrative unity to the Palestinian territories on the basis of the political platform of the PLO and the Arab Peace Initiative.
The Ministers welcomed the agreement reached between the two Afghan leaders and committed to support the new government of Afghanistan in pursuing the task of building a strong, developed and peaceful nation.
The Ministers voiced serious concern over the conflict areas in Africa that negatively affect the security and stability of some States. They expressed their common view that the main role in tackling African conflicts should be played by Africans themselves with active support from the UN and the international community, through the African Union and its Peace and Security Council.
The Ministers of Foreign Affairs of the BRICS countries expressed their interest in exploring ways of joining efforts for supporting the prompt establishment of the interim African Capacity for Immediate Response to Crises (ACIRC) and the subsequent establishment of the African Stand-by Force.
The BRICS member states expressed grave concern about the outbreak of the Ebola virus in and its impact on West African countries. The Ministers stressed the need to contain the spread of the disease. They called for an urgent and comprehensive support of all relevant UN system entities, including WHO, to assist the affected countries in responding effectively to the crisis, and in this regard, welcomed the establishment of the UN Mission for Emergency Ebola Response. In this context, they supported the High Level Meeting on response to Ebola outbreak, convened by the UN Secretary-General on 25th September 2014. Each of BRICS countries has contributed to the international effort against the disease.
The Ministers underscored the importance of ensuring peace and stability in Ukraine. They welcomed the Protocol on the results of consultations of the Trilateral Contact Group, signed on September 4, 2014, and the Memorandum on the implementation of the said Protocol signed on September 20, 2014, and expressed their hope that the provisions of these documents shall be complied with.
The Ministers supported the UN Security Council resolution of September 24, 2014, on foreign terrorist fighters and called on the international community to cooperate in efforts to address the threat posed by the foreign terrorist fighters, including by preventing their recruitment, movement across borders and disrupting their financial support.
The Russian side briefed its partners on the preparations for the VII BRICS Summit in 2015 in the city of Ufa. Russia stressed its willingness to ensure the continuity of strategic focus of the association, while enriching it with new areas and formats of cooperation, which will be shared by the Russian Chairpersonship during the preparatory process.
The sides discussed the possibilities of supporting each other’s initiatives at the 69th session of the UN General Assembly.