Since 1999, Romania has submitted, to the United Nations General
Assembly and to the Commission on Human Rights, a series of resolutions
aiming at promoting and consolidating democracy, starting with a
"Code of Democratic Conduct". In the process, the issue of legitimacy
of such endeavours has come out, issue which may also be raised with
respect with the joint actions of the "Community of democracies".
Building common purposes among the UN's democracies should be in fact
building legitimacy for concerted action aiming at promoting the values
Legitimacy building is necessary for a number of reasons:
1. Firstly, because legitimacy is not a static notion and should be
- Legitimacy should be construed in a dynamic perspective,
one that requires that action under UN auspices is dependent on the search
of new political and intellectual resources.
- As the notion of democracy is not literally provided in the UN Charter,
we have to build legitimacy as to respond to the current challenges.
- At present, despite of the ups and downs of the democratic processes all
over the world, no one can convincingly challenge the legitimacy of action by
UN member states in the name of democracy.
2. Secondly, because legitimacy of UN action in favour of democracy depends
the United Nations system authority in general.
- We recognize that the UN system has a meaningful role to play
in handling questions and challenges of common interest and
in continually building common values.
- Its actions are as valid in the realm of maintaining peace and security,
as they are in the protection of human rights, in the codification
of international law that governs the bottom of the High Seas or
the peaceful uses of outer space.
- If we recognize its competence to deal with these issues, we may,
consequently, assert its legitimacy, based on more consistent commitments
to the values of democracy.
3. Thirdly, because legitimacy is needed for a more efficient contribution
of the UN system to what we call global governance.
- Global governance depends not only on the networks and the material
expression of global connections, as the globalization's hardware,
but also on the values disseminated, as the globalization's software.
- Among them, the values of human rights and democracy, may be expected
to help the UN to better achieve its objectives and serve its main
beneficiaries: the peoples.
4. Fourthly, legitimacy is related to representation, defense and
promotion of values and interests.
- There is nothing to prevent Member States to associate and work
together in any group and to use any criteria they chose.
- There are so many respectable and influential groups that
express themselves, suggest or take action within the United
Nations: the Non-alignment movement, based on the original notion
of non-appurtenance to any military block, the G77 based on the
common and pressing need and to act together to overcome the
scourge of underdevelopment, as well as other groups based on
cultural affinities or simply like-minded.
- Therefore, sharing a certain identifiable amount of democratic
principles and practices is a fully legitimate catalyst of coherent
joint action for better awareness and projection of shared values.
- This does not mean creation of a select club, since its very
reason of such a group would be promotion of democracy and
inclusion of any countries that wish to join.
These are all good reasons for the UN democracies to engage into a conscientious
kind of interaction, one stemming from the wish to advance democratic processes
all over the world. New bridges can be built among countries in all continents.
The best place to do that is the United Nations.
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