HIGHLIGHTS-Declaration of the G8 on the Arab Spring

Fri May 27, 2011 8:34am GMT

DEAUVILLE, France May 27 (Reuters) - Following are key passages from the Group of Eight leaders' Declaration on the Arab Spring. A final text of the communique was obtained by Reuters in advance of its publication later on Friday.

1) The changes under way in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) are historic and have the potential to open the door to the kind of transformation that occurred in Central and Eastern Europe after the fall of the Berlin Wall. The aspiration of people for freedom, human rights, democracy, job opportunities, empowerment and dignity, has led them to take control of their own destinies in a growing number of countries in the region. It resonates with and reinforces our common values.

2) We, members of the G8, strongly support the aspirations of the "Arab spring" as well as those of the Iranian people. We hear the voice of the citizens, support their determination for equality and stand by their legitimate call for democratic, open societies and inclusive economic modernisation. We particularly commend the role played by young people and women in these transformational movements.

3) Today we launched the "Deauville Partnership" with the people of the region, based on our common goals for the future, in the presence of the Prime Ministers of Egypt and Tunisia, the two countries that originated the movement, and of the Secretary General of the Arab League. We stand ready to extend this long term global Partnership to all countries of the region engaging in a transition towards free, democratic and tolerant societies ("Partnership Countries"), beginning with Egypt and Tunisia, in association with countries wishing to support transition in the region. This Partnership enshrines common values of freedom and democracy and is founded on the respect for the sovereignty of States and peoples, whose protection is the common responsibility of governments. It builds on initiatives already undertaken by G8 members.

4) This Partnership is based on two pillars: a political process to support the democratic transition and foster governance reforms, notably the fight against corruption and the strengthening of the institutions needed to ensure transparency and accountable government; and an economic framework for sustainable and inclusive growth. It is designed to support Partnership Countries in the economic and social reforms that they will undertake, particularly to create jobs and enshrine the fair rule of law, while ensuring that economic stability underpins the challenge of transition to stable democracies.   Continued...

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