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Asunto:[LEA-Venezuela] South Africa to Convene Friends of the Chair Meeting
Fecha:Viernes, 19 de Julio, 2002  16:50:51 (-0400)
Autor:Sociedad de Amigos en defensa de la Gran Sabana-Orinoco Oil Watch <amigrans @........ve>

South Africa to Convene Friends of the Chair Meeting to Help Speed Agreement
on Johannesburg Outcome

New York, 9 July-South African President Thabo Mbeki has invited 25
countries to serve as "Friends of the Chair" for the World Summit on
Sustainable Development in an effort to find an approach that will help
resolve the remaining differences and achieve a global consensus at the
Summit. The group will hold its first meeting in New York on 17 July.

The South African initiative grew out of discussions between President Mbeki
and United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan during the Group of Eight
Summit in Kananaskis, Canada last month. According to South African UN
Ambassador Dumisani Kumalo, the leaders of the G8 were among the first to
accept President Mbeki's invitation.

The 25 countries were selected based on geographical representation as well
as "their common interest in the pending issues, and their overall
commitment to the success of the Johannesburg Summit," Kumalo said.

South Africa assumed the chairmanship of the Summit after the last
preparatory meeting in Bali, Indonesia last month. The Bali meeting
concluded with agreements on about three-quarters of the Summit's
implementation plan, and the remaining issues, which include some of the
most difficult, were left for Johannesburg. The Chairman of the Preparatory
Committee for the Summit was Dr. Emil Salim of Indonesia.

The 17 July meeting will be led by South African Minister of Foreign
Affairs, Dr. Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma, and by the UN Secretary-General. It is
South Africa's hope that the meeting will be attended by Ministers or
"sherpas" who report directly to the Heads of State and Government of the
invited countries.

President Mbeki, according to a press release issued by the South African
Mission to the United Nations, "remains convinced that a focused political
discussion of the outstanding issues could result in an approach that can
help expedite the process in Johannesburg."

The Friends of the Chair meeting will not be a negotiating session, which
must be open to all Member States. Rather, it provides an opportunity for
key players to find an approach or a mechanism that would facilitate the
negotiations to be held in Johannesburg.

Still to be resolved are issues concerning trade and finance, globalization,
setting targets and timetables, and differences over the interpretation of
principles adopted at the Earth Summit.

South African representatives noted that the Bali PrepCom was successful in
reducing the number of outstanding issues in the implementation plan, and
expressed their appreciation for Indonesia's efforts in hosting the meeting.

The countries invited by President Mbeki to serve as Friends of the Chair
include Argentina, Brazil, Canada, China, Denmark, Egypt, France, Germany,
Ghana, India, Indonesia, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Jordan, Mexico, Nigeria,
Norway, Russian Federation, Senegal, Sweden, Uganda, United Kingdom, United
States and Venezuela.



AMIGRANSA. Sociedad de Amigos en Defensa de la Gran Sabana
Dirección: Apartado Postal 50460.Caracas 1050-A. Venezuela
TEL y Fax  +58 (212) 992 1884 / Tel +58 (212) 693 9480
e-mail: AmiGranSa <amigrans@internet.ve>, <amigransa@cantv.net>
 
La Sociedad de Amigos en defensa de la Gran Sabana es
una asociación civil sin fines de lucro,constituida en abril
de 1986 para la preservación, conservación y defensa del
patrimonio ecológico -cultural de la Gran Sabana, Parque Nacional Canaima
(Tierra de Tepuis), la Cuenca del rió Caroni y de todas aquellas áreas
pertenecientes al Macizo Guayanés. De igual manera unimos nuestros
esfuerzos para que se respeten  los derechos de los Pueblos Indígenas que
habitan estos territorios ancestrales y apoyamos la defensa que estos hacen
para preservarlos
junto a su cultura milenaria.
 
Nos hemos sumado a esta causa por un profundo amor a la
naturaleza y porque estamos convencidos que el respeto al mundo
natural y a las leyes ecológicas, son una de las vías primordial