OFFICE OF THE PRESDIENT OF THE REPUBLIC OF ECUADOR

CULTURE OF PEACE OFFICE

 Jamil Mahuad Witt

 CONSTITUTIONAL PRESIDENT OF THE REPUBLIC

Whereas in accordance with Article 4 of the Political Constitution of the Republic, Ecuador proclaims peace and condemns the use or threat of force as a means of solving conflicts in its relations with the international community.

Since in accordance with Article 3 of the Political Constitution of the Republic it is the duty of the State of Ecuador to strengthen national unity in diversity, and ensure the observance of human rights and fundamental freedoms of women and men,

Whereas it is the highest duty of the State to respect and enforce the observance of human rights guaranteed under the Constitution, in accordance with its Article 16,

Whereas the State Guarantees equality before the law, freedom of identity and other civil rights and adopts the necessary measures to prevent, eliminate and sanction violence,

Whereas the State of Ecuador guarantees social and cultural rights and the collective rights of its national communities,

Whereas the State of Ecuador advocates respect for human rights, the practice of justice and solidarity and intercultural relations, and cooperation in maintaining peace and security,

Whereas at its 52nd session, the United Nations General Assembly unanimously approved the culture of peace project presented by UNESCO in resolution 52/13 of 20 November 1997, and adopted resolution 52/15, proclaiming the year 2000 "International Year for the Culture of Peace",

While in UNGA resolution 52/13 on a Culture of Peace, stresses that the task of the United Nations of preserving future generations from the scourge of war requires a universal culture of peace, with values, attitudes and behaviours that are conducive to social interaction and exchange based on principles of freedom, justice and democracy, respect for human rights, tolerance and solidarity in order to combat violence and prevent conflicts,

Whereas the UNESCO transdisciplinary programme "Towards a Culture of Peace" has been defined as a world-wide movement to support and co-ordinate national culture of peace projects, through education, inter-cultural dialogue and ongoing initiatives in the Organization,

Whereas the President of the Republic of Ecuador, exercising the powers conferred upon him by the Constitution, wishes to link Ecuador with this important international activity aimed at strengthening peace in which, moreover, Ecuadorean society as a whole will be involved through intersectoral and pluridisciplinary programmes, both national and international,

Whereas        by practising, the principle of solving differences peacefully through dialogue and negotiation, the General Peace Agreement with Peru is an example true to the spirit of the culture of peace concept of the UN which ensures that the relationship between Ecuador and Peru is a priority for reinforcing a culture of peace policy,

Whereas        the culture of peace is state policy and, therefore, implies wide action enabling the implementation of this new concept of the United Nations to develop both nationally and internationally.

Whereas  such an effort can only be undertaken as part of a mobilizing, constitutional and organized governmental policy, that requires joint and coordinated action between public bodies, the National Congress, the private business sector, academia, community leaders and social communicators.

Exercising the powers conferred upon him by N' 9 of Article 171 of the Political Constitution of the Republic of Ecuador, and Article 11 of the Estado de Regimen Juridico Administrativo de la Funci6n Ejecutiva [Legal and administrative regime of the Executive Function]

 

DECREES THAT:

 ARTICLE 1:

Creation           The National Council for the Culture of Peace shall be created, composed of the Ministers and Secretaries of State for Foreign Affairs, Human Development and Defence, the Director of the Culture of Peace Office (CPO), who will be the legal representative of the body and responsible for technical and administrative management, and a representative of civil society appointed by the President, who will preside this Council.

 ARTICLE 2:

Powers                 The National Council for the Culture of Peace shall have the following powers: to determine lines of action, strategies and criteria ensuring the complementarity of policies and their articulation; to approve the National Plan for a Culture of Peace; and to receive and approve the reports prepared by the Director of the Culture of Peace Office.

The "Culture of Peace Office" will act as the executive and administrative organ of the National Council for the Culture of Peace.

ARTICLE 3:

Creation             The Culture of Peace Office shall be created as a public body and legal entity, with its own capital resources and legal and administrative regime, attached to the Office of the President of the Republic.   Its Headquarters shall be in the City of Quito, and its jurisdiction shall be national.

 ARTICLE 4:

Mission             The Culture of Peace Office, as an entity of the executive authority, seeks to generate values, attitudes                              and behaviours based on the principles of freedom, justice, democracy, tolerance and solidarity, as the                              foundations of the national development process.  This is part of a strategy that seeks to strengthen                              democracy and respect for human rights and to eliminate discrimination of all kinds.

 ARTICLE 5:

 Lines of action: The following are its lines of action:

       to co-ordinate, monitor and complement initiatives defined by the State and by civil society in favour of a culture of peace;

       to disseminate strategies and methods to prevent, manage and resolve conflicts, aimed at overcoming all forms of violence, intolerance and discrimination;

       to promote and develop spaces in which to generate multisectoral, regional and intercultural dialogues;

       to provide impetus for the objectives and achievements of peace from the angle of national economic, social and cultural development;

       to further a culture of peace between humankind and nature;

       to develop the necessary relations and ties for the Culture of Peace Office to function efficiently;

       to promote broad institutional, social and associative participation;

            to support local, national, regional and international initiatives.

 Objectives, strategies, policies and programmes will be prepared following the lines of action previously established by the CPO in the National Plan for a Culture of Peace, prior to approval by the National Council for the Culture of Peace.

 ARTICLE 6:

 Organization.  The Culture of Peace Office will be structured as follows in order to fulfil its objectives:

       an Executive Office, appointed by the President of the Republic,

       an Advisory Board of 5 members who are representative of Ecuadorian society, appointed by the National Council for the Culture of Peace,

      a Co-ordinator for Bi-national and International Relations, appointed by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs,

      a Technical Project Co-ordinator,

            institutional services: communication and administration.

ARTICLE 7

Financial Resources - The Culture of Peace Office will have the following financial resources:

 a.     Appropriations made in the General State Budget;

 b.     Donations and contributions from the private sector, and from national and international organizations;

 c.     Proceeds of loans, both reimbursable and non-reimbursable;

 d.     Proceeds of institutional self-management; and,

 e.     Proceeds of special funds.

 

ARTICLE 8:

 Assets: Real estate, movable assets, and national funding will be channelled for implementation through the National Secretariat of the Office of the President of the Republic of Ecuador.

 

ARTICLE 9:

 Execution: The execution of the present Decree, which will enter into force on the date of its publication in the Official Register, shall be the responsibility of the Ministers and Secretaries of State for Human Development, Foreign Affairs, Defence, Education and Culture and Finance.

 Issued in the National Palace in the Metropolitan District of Quito to:

 Dr Jamil Mahuad Witt
CONSTITUTIONAL PRESIDENT OF THE REPUBLIC OF ECUADOR

Dr Benjamin Ortiz Brennan
MINISTER FOR FOREIGN AFFAIRS

 Dr-Carlos Larreategui
SECRETARY OF STATE FOR HUMAN DEVELOPMENT

 Gen.  Jose Gallardo Roman
MINISTER OF DEFENCE

 Ms Ros6ngela Adoum
MINISTER FOR EDUCATION AND CULTURE

 Mr Alfredo Arizaga
MINISTER OF FINANCE


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