AU and NATO Membership

NATIONAL ASSEMBLY

FOR ORAL REPLY

QUESTION NO: 44

PUBLISHED IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NO 17 OF 31 MAY 2005

Dr S E M Pheko (PAC) to ask the Minister of Foreign Affairs:
(1) Whether membership of military alliances such as the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (Nato) is in conflict with membership of the African Union (AU) and of the Pan African Parliament (PAP); if not, what is the position in this regard; if so,
(1) whether the (a) Government and (b) AU have any mechanisms in place to deal with member states of the AU and PAP that affiliate to such military alliances; if not, why not; if so, what mechanisms in each case?

N981E

REPLY:

As far as we are aware, no member of the African Union is a member of NATO nor are we aware of any country in the African Union that is seeking membership.

Although there is no prohibition in the Constitutive Act of the African Union, nor in any of its protocols to membership of NATO or other similar alliances, we are not aware of any such aspirations by member states.

Obviously, African Union Members States are under obligation in international law not to breach the provisions of the Constitutive Act or other treaties to which they are party.


NATIONAL ASSEMBLY

PUBLISHED ON INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NUMBER 17 OF 31 MAY 2005

FOR ORAL REPLY

QUESTION NO: 45

Dr S E M Pheko (PAC) to ask the Minister of Foreign Affairs:

(1) Whether the she has taken up cases where South Africans have been refused visas to visit friends or to do business in the United States of America on the grounds that they would seek work or were terrorists; if not, why not; if so, what are the relevant details?

N1114E

REPLY:

(1) With respect to what the honourable member refers to as terrorists, presumably those who were cadres in the liberation movement, the response is the same as that given to his question 164 published in the Internal Question Paper Number 4 of 11 June 2004, I quote:

"The department is unaware of instances where such application (s) by former cadres of the liberation movements for a waiver of the visa denial have not been accepted. There were instances where non-governmental visa applications could not be processed on time due to the fact that application were made on the eve of the scheduled journey.

The US State department has also assured our Embassy in Washington that the problem is of a technical nature and that it is not intended as a reflection on the liberation movement's contribution to the anti-apartheid struggle at all."

With regards to the rejection of visa application on the basis of seeking employment, each country has its own rules and regulations regarding visa requirements. South Africans applying to the US or any other country for a visa must comply with those regulations.

END.

---000---

NATIONAL ASSEMBLY

FOR ORAL REPLY

QUESTION NO: PQ 57

PUBLISHED IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NO 17 OF 31 MAY 2005

Mr KO Bapela (DA) to ask the Minister of Foreign Affairs:
Whether the large presence of South Africans in Iraq without the mandate of the Government augments or complements the Government's efforts towards human rights, peace and stability; if not, what is the Government doing about the activities of these South Africans in Iraq; if so, how? N1105E

REPLY:

The South African Government remains committed to actively supporting international efforts, through the United Nations, to restore peace and stability, as well as to promote respect for human rights, in Iraq.

The Government however remains concerned regarding the involvement of South African citizens in any activities which are in contravention of the Foreign Military Assistance Act and has taken the necessary steps prescribed in the act where such activities come to its attention. In this regard, it will be recalled that the Minister of Defence had announced on 27 October 2004, during a press briefing in Parliament, that nearly 100 South Africans were under investigation in terms of the Act.

---000---

NATIONAL ASSEMBLY

FOR ORAL REPLY

QUESTION NO: 59

PUBLISHED IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NO 17 OF 31 MAY 2005

Adv Z L Madasa (ACDP) to ask the Minister of Foreign Affairs
In view of the constant eruption of violence on the continent due to disputed elections, what measures are being taken by the African Union to address the problem of disputed elections? N1107E

REPLY:

The African Union will commence a process to draft its own guidelines regarding election monitoring in July 2005.

In the meanwhile it is theoretically possible to raise such matters with the African Union Peace and Security Council which in Article 8 (7) regarding procedures stipulates that:

"The provisional agenda of the Peace and Security Council shall be determined by the Chairperson of the Peace and Security Council on the basis of proposals submitted by the Chairperson of the Commission and Member States. The inclusion of any item in the provisional agenda may not be opposed by a Member State."


---000---

NATIONAL ASSEMBLY

PUBLISHED ON INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NUMBER 17 OF 31 MAY 2005

FOR ORAL REPLY

QUESTION NO: 60

Mr D H M Gibson (DA) to ask the Minister of Foreign Affairs:

(2) Whether the Government agrees with the United Nations Secretary General, Kofi Annan, that the UN Human Rights Commission is failing to uphold the Commission's credibility and that the entire UN system has been undermined by the election of Sudan, Zimbabwe, China, Russia and Saudi Arabia to the Commission; if not, why not; if so, on what basis does the Government agree;
(3) Whether the Government supports Kofi Annan's proposal that a new Human Rights Council replace the Human Rights Commission; if not, why not; if so, why;
(4) Whether the Government agrees that members of the Council must uphold the highest possible standards of human rights; if not, why not; if so, how would this approach determine South Africa's support for nominees in the future?

N1108E

REPLY:

(2) Whilst we agree that the credibility of the United Nations Commission on Human Rights (CHR) is being undermined, we do not agree that this is the result of the election of any specific country such as those arbitrarily listed by the Honourable Member.

Rather, it is the selective nature and the politicisation of the agenda of the CHR that undermines its credibility.

We consequently agree with the observation of the United Nations Secretary General made in his address to the CHR in Geneva in April 2004 where he stated that the Commission is "undermined by the politicisation of its session and the selectivity of its work".

(3) South Africa subscribes to the common African position contained in the Ezulwini Consensus that "the status quo on the composition and location of the CHR should be maintained".

We also support the view that has been expressed about "the need for further consultations on the proposals related to the CHR".

(4) Yes. South Africa has consistently advocated that member states of the United Nations should promote a culture of human rights. This, we do, conscious of the fact that all member states are eligible to be candidates for all United Nations bodies for which vacancies exist.

---000---
NATIONAL ASSEMBLY

FOR ORAL REPLY

QUESTION NO: 61

PUBLISHED IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NO 17 OF 31 MAY 2005

Mr DHM Gibson (DA) to ask the Minister of Foreign Affairs:
Whether, as the current Chairperson of the African Union Post-Conflict and Reconstruction Committee (PCRC) in Sudan, the Government will support the deployment of United Nations troops to the province of Darfur; if not, why not; if so, what steps will the Government take to ensure that this takes place?
N1109E

REPLY:

Article 17 of the Protocol Establishing the Peace and Security Council describes the relationship between the AU and the United Nations. Article 17 (2) in particular notes that where necessary, recourse will be made to the United Nations to provide the necessary financial, logistical and military support for the African Unions' activities in the promotion and maintenance of peace, security and stability in Africa, in keeping with the provisions of Chapter VIII of the UN Charter on the role of Regional Organizations in the maintenance of international peace and security.

It would therefore be a natural progression for the AMIS to be turned into a United Nations Mission, as the United Nations recognises its responsibility regarding conflict areas in Africa.

This process has in fact already begun. The Secretary-General of the UN has reported to the UNSC on the situation in Darfur. He contended that the strengthening of AMIS is necessary to ensure stability in Darfur. He proposed that the UN assist the AU by offering its technical assistance and training to bolster AMIS. The Security Council welcomed the SG's proposals and called on donors to continue their support for the AU operation.

After this report to the UN, Mr Kofi Annan met with the Chairperson of the African Union Commission in Addis Ababa for a Pledging Conference for AMIS, which was held in Addis Ababa on 26 May 2005. The idea to host this Conference followed on the decision taken by the AU Peace and Security Council of 28 April 2005, authorising the further enhancement of AMIS to a full operational capability of 6,171 military personnel, with an appropriate civilian component, including up to 1,560 civilian police, by the end of September 2005.

Therefore, South Africa supports any decision of the AU or UN regarding additional troops.

END.
---000---

NATIONAL ASSEMBLY

FOR ORAL REPLY

QUESTION NO: 62

PUBLISHED IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NO 17 OF 31 MAY 2005

Mr W J Seremane (DA) to ask the Minister of Foreign Affairs:
Whether the recent purchase by the Zimbabwean government of six Chinese-made Karakorum 8 (K-8) military trainer jets will contribute to a regional arms race; if not, why not; if so, what action does the Government intend taking? N1110E

REPLY:

No. This will not contribute to a regional arms race as there is no arms race taking place in the region.

END.
---000---

NATIONAL ASSEMBLY

FOR ORAL REPLY

QUESTION NO: 63

PUBLISHED IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NO 17 OF 31 MAY 2005

Mr W J Seremane (DA) to ask the Minister of Foreign Affairs:
Whether a Zimbabwean economic collapse will have any direct impact on the South African economy; if not, (a) why not and (b) what factors did she take into consideration in reaching this conclusion; if so, what are the relevant details? N1111E


REPLY:
Yes, if it collapses, which is not the case now, it will have an impact on the South African economy. However, it must be noted that, the fact that Zimbabwe's economy is shrinking does not mean that it is collapsing.

END.

 



Quick Links

Disclaimer | Contact Us | HomeLast Updated: 10 June, 2005 2:43 PM
This site is best viewed using 800 x 600 resolution with Internet Explorer 5.0, Netscape Communicator 4.5 or higher.
2003 Department of Foreign Affairs, Republic of South Africa