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[Text of the Treaty]

 

» PROTOCOL OF AMENDMENT TO THE CHARTER OF THE ORGANIZATION OF AMERICAN STATES (A-50) "PROTOCOL OF CARTAGENA DE INDIAS"  

 
Signatories and Ratifications
ADOPTED AT: CARTAGENA DE INDIAS, COLOMBIA 
DATE: 12/05/85
CONF/ASSEM/MEETING: FOURTEENTH SPECIAL SESSION OF THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY
ENTRY INTO FORCE: 11/16/88 IN ACCORDANCE WITH ARTICLE IX OF THE PROTOCOL
DEPOSITORY: GENERAL SECRETARIAT, OAS (ORIGINAL INSTRUMENT AND RATIFICATIONS)
TEXT: OAS, TREATY SERIES, NO. 66 
UN REGISTRATION: / / No. Vol. 
OBSERVATIONS: 
 
GENERAL INFORMATION OF THE TREATY: A-50
COUNTRY SIGNATURE RATIFICATION/ACCESSION DEPOSIT INFORMATION*
Antigua & Barbuda 12/14/86 11/07/86 11/24/86 RA -
Argentina 12/05/85 10/31/88 11/07/88 RA -
Bahamas 12/05/85 11/07/86 11/07/86 RA -
Barbados 12/05/85 11/06/86 12/02/86 RA -
Belize - - - -
Bolivia 12/05/85 11/12/88 11/16/88 RA -
Brazil 12/05/85 09/20/88 10/03/88 RA -
Canada - - - -
Chile 12/05/85 06/16/89 09/29/89 RA Yes
Colombia 12/05/85 03/06/87 03/12/87 RA -
Costa Rica 12/05/85 09/18/90 11/16/90 RA -
Dominica 12/05/85 11/07/86 11/18/86 RA -
Dominican Republic 12/05/85 11/06/86 12/03/86 RA -
Ecuador 12/05/85 04/27/90 05/22/90 RA Yes
El Salvador 12/05/85 11/15/88 11/16/88 RA -
Grenada 06/10/86 10/24/86 11/12/86 RA -
Guatemala 12/05/85 04/10/01 10/01/01 RA -
Guyana - - - -
Haiti 12/05/85 - - -
Honduras 12/05/85 03/16/87 04/15/87 RA -
Jamaica 12/05/85 10/31/86 11/07/86 RA -
Mexico 12/05/85 08/31/88 10/11/88 RA Yes
Nicaragua 12/05/85 11/11/88 11/16/88 RA -
Panama 06/13/86 07/13/89 08/24/89 RA Yes
Paraguay 12/05/85 03/06/87 03/27/87 RA -
Peru 12/05/85 09/18/96 06/20/96 RA Yes
St. Kitts & Nevis 04/16/86 11/06/86 12/04/86 RA -
St. Lucia 12/05/85 01/22/87 02/06/87 RA -
St. Vincent & Grenadines 09/28/87 06/15/87 09/28/87 RA -
Suriname 12/05/85 11/11/87 11/12/87 RA -
Trinidad & Tobago - - - -
United States 11/07/86 - - Yes
Uruguay 12/05/85 10/01/90 10/02/90 RA -
Venezuela 12/05/85 05/20/93 08/10/93 RA -
          
REF = REFERENCE                                      INST = TYPE OF INSTRUMENT
       D = DECLARATION                                      RA = RATIFICATION
       R = RESERVATION                                      AC = ACCEPTANCE
INFORMA  = INFORMATION REQUIRED BY THE TREATY               AD = ACCESSION
                                                                            
                              
*DECLARATIONS/RESERVATIONS/DENUNCIATIONS/WITHDRAWS
TREATY REFERENCES: A-50
 

1. Ecuador:

(Statement made at the time of signature)

With regard to the Permanent Council's functions vis-á-vis the peaceful settlement of disputes, the Delegation of Ecuador believes that unilateral recourse by any of the parties to a dispute to obtain the Council`s good offices is governed by the obligation that the Permanent Council has, in the application of the Charter`s principles and lofty purposes for peace, "to assist the parties and to recommend the procedures it considers suitable for the peaceful settlement of the dispute."  All of this is now a broad mandate to the Permanent Council to watch over the maintenance of friendly relations among the Member States and to assist them effectively in the peaceful settlement of their disputes.  Even if the procedure is not accepted by one of the parties, the Council may take steps to achieve an agreement.

 

2. United States:

(Statement made at the time of signature)

   The United States, upon signing the Protocol of Amendment to the Charter of the Organization of American States, states that it does so subject to the following understandings and that the provisions of the Protocol shall be effective with respect to the United States only insofar as they are interpreted and applied in a manner consistent with such understandings:   

Article 1 of the Charter, as amended by the Protocol, does not limit the existing powers and functions of the Organization of American States (OAS) as practiced over the last forty years and any action taken by the OAS under the Charter or the Inter-American Treaty of Reciprocal Assistance (Rio Treaty), such as actions in furtherance of democracy or security, will not be considered to be inconsistent with this article.  

Article 3, paragraph (e) of the Charter, as amended by the Protocol, must be interpreted as being consistent with, and not derogating from, the democratic principles embodied in paragraph (d) of this same article.  Accordingly, it neither bars the promotion under the Charter and Rio Treaty of democracy and security by the Organization and its Member States, nor requires the OAS or its Member States to accept regimes that are undemocratic or otherwise hostile to inter-American values, nor is it intended in any way to change the fundamental character of the OAS as an organization of democratic states.

Article 23 of the Charter, as amended by the Protocol, does not affect the obligation of Member States to continue to submit disputes with other American states to the peaceful procedures set forth in the Charter of the Organization of American States before referring such disputes to the United Nations Security Council, consistent with Article 52(2) of the United Nations Charter and with the purpose of the Protocol to strengthen the Organization.

Articles 29, 30 and 31 of the Charter, as amended by the Protocol, do not create enforceable legal obligations and do not affect the sovereign rights and discretion of donor and recipient states with respect to the provision and receipt of assistance, including the terms, conditions and mechanisms under and through which such assistance may be provided.  The pledge to ensure international social justice extends the requirements that Member States mobilize their own national human and material resources through suitable programs and recognize the importance of operating within an efficient domestic structure as fundamental conditions for their economic and social progress and for assuring effective inter-American cooperation.  In this regard, the United States will continue to help Member States fulfill their goals of social justice through assistance it considers appropriate to support democracy, human rights, and the poor of the region.

Article 35 of the Charter, as amended by the Protocol, does not derogate in any way from the obligation of states reflected in Article 3 faithfully to fulfill their international obligations with respect to transnational enterprises whether derived from treaties and agreements or other sources of international law, nor does it derogate from the jurisdiction other states may have with regard to such enterprises.

Article 38 of the Charter, as amended by the Protocol, establishes non binding goals, including the important goal of reducing or eliminating tariff and nontariff barriers to exports of all Member States, and does not affect the competence or scope of the General Agreement and Tariffs and Trade (GATT), as the principal rule making body for the international trading system, to address negotiable issues such as special and differential treatment for developing country exports.  

 

3. Peru:

   (Statement made at the time of signature)

 Upon signing this Protocol of Amendment, the Delegation of Peru states that it is only an initial, albeit significant, step in the process of restructuring the inter-American system, as provided for in resolution AG/RES. 745 (XIV-0/84).  In order to be complete, this restructuring calls for, among other amendments, the inclusion of collective economic security in the Charter of the Organization.

This goes hand in hand with the preservation of peace and security in the hemisphere and also with overall development, which has been included in this amendment.  The Delegation of Peru states by way of a reservation that the powers conferred upon the Secretary General in Article 116 may not be exercised for matters that have already been resolved through settlement by the parties or through the decision of an arbitrator or a judgment handed down by an international court, or that are governed by agreements or treaties in force.  Also, in accordance with international law, good offices are a means of peaceful settlement whose scope has been specified in international treaties, including the Pact of Bogotá. This procedure assumes the consent of the parties, and it is in this sense that the Delegation of Peru understands the powers conferred upon the Permanent Council in the new Article 84 of this Protocol.

 

4. Chile:

(Statements made at the time of ratification)  

a)  The Government of Chile states that it understands the new Article 35 to vest final authority in the legislation of the individual Member States. Consequently, this provision does not limit or invalidate the sovereign right of each State to establish the laws for the governance of foreign investment and transnational enterprises which it regards as best suited to the needs of its national development.

b)  The Government of Chile states that the procedure for the settlement of disputes established in Article 84 and the functions vested in the Secretary General by Article 116 must necessarily be interpreted in keeping with the other provisions of the Charter.  In particular, the Government of Chile notes the special relevance of Article 1, which enshrines the principle of strict legality in the Organization's actions, of Articles 3.b and 17 on respect for and observance of treaties,  judicial judgments, arbitral awards, and other sources of international law, of Article 18 on nonintervention in the internal or external affairs of States, and of Article 89, which requires the Permanent Council to observe the provisions of the Charter, international law, and treaties in force.

 

5. Mexico:

(Statement made at the time of ratification)

The Government of Mexico states that it hereby ratifies the Protocol of Amendment to the Charter of the Organization of American States, Protocol of Cartagena de Indias, especially pleased by the inclusion within the Charter of guiding principles that renew our faith in the Organization, and reaffirms that:

1. The second paragraph of Article 1 of the Protocol specifically establishes that the Organization of American States has no implicit or residual powers, rejects the legal possibility of extensive interpretations of its governing precepts, and subordinates the Organization itself to the principle set forth in Article 18 of the Charter whereby no State or group of States has the right to intervene, directly or indirectly, for any reason whatever, in the internal or external affairs of any other state.

2. Article 3 e) introduces political pluralism into the Charter as the guiding principle of inter-American coexistence and stresses the inalienable right of every state to choose, without external interference, the political, economic, and social organization best suited to it, establishes the obligation of the American States to cooperate fully among themselves, independently of their political, economic, and social systems, and aspires to a plural and democratic Organization composed of all the American States.

3. Article 23 of the Charter, amended by the Protocol of Cartagena, definitively eliminates the supposed conflict of competition between regional and universal forums by stating that the obligation to submit international disputes among the Member States to the peaceful procedures indicated in the Charter does not impair the rights and obligations of the Member States, pursuant to Article 35 of the Charter of the United Nations, thus reaffirming the sovereign faculty of the States to have recourse to the forum best suited to their interests as soon as they deem it necessary.

4. Articles 29 and 30, which regulate the principle enunciated in Article 3 j), commit the Member States to a united effort to ensure international social justice in their relations and to attain integral development for their peoples through free and unconditional cooperation, in accordance with the goals and priorities set by each country.

5. Article 35 of the Protocol, which supplements and develops Article 15 of the Charter with reference to transnational enterprises and private investment, stipulates that such enterprises and investments shall adapt to the development policy of the recipient countries and are subject to their legislation, to the jurisdiction of their competent courts, and to any international treaties and agreements to which they are parties.

 

6.  Panama:

(Statement made at the time of ratification)

In ratifying the Protocol of Amendment to the Charter of the Organization of American States, Protocol of Cartagena de Indias, the Republic of Panama pronounces the Protocol a solemn reaffirmation of the Organization's purposes of achieving an order of peace and justice and promoting the solidarity, strengthening the collaboration, and defending the sovereignty, territorial integrity and independence of the Member American States.  It also declares that the provisions of the Protocol shall be binding on the Republic of Panama whenever applied in accordance with the following understandings:

1. Article 1 of the Charter of the Organization of American States, as amended by the Protocol of Cartagena de  Indias, empowers no organ of the Organization of American States (OAS) to take, under the Charter, the Inter-American Treaty of Reciprocal Assistance (Rio Treaty) or any other pretext, any action or measure that implies any derogation from the sovereignty, territorial integrity or national independence of Member States, neither does it authorize any intervention in their internal or external affairs.      

2. Paragraph e) in Article 3 of the Charter, as amended by the Protocol of Cartagena de Indias, enshrines political pluralism as a basic principle of inter-American comity and reaffirms the right of each State to choose, without external interference, the political, economic and social organization best suited to it.   

3. Article 23 of the Charter of the Organization as amended by the Protocol of Cartagena de Indias, in accordance with Article 136 of the Charter, leaves intact the rights and obligations of the Member States under Articles 34 and 35 of the Charter of the United Nations, and each Member State may exercise as needed its sovereign right to resort to the international forum that best meets its national interest.

4. Articles 29 and 30 of the Charter, as amended by the Protocol of Cartagena de Indias, pledge the Member States to a united effort to ensure international social justice as a condition essential to peace and security in the hemisphere, and further reaffirm that inter-American cooperation for the integral development of the Member States must be without political ties or conditions and must respect national sovereignty and the objectives and priorities that each country sets for itself.

5. Article 35 of the Charter, as amended by the Protocol of Cartagena de Indias, complements Article 15 of the Charter and extends its scope to embrace transnational enterprises and foreign private investment, making the ineluctably subject to the legislation of the host countries and the jurisdiction of their competent courts, to the international treaties and agreements to which those countries are parties, and to the development policies of the recipient countries.

 

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