(Quebec) “It was a difficult negotiation. It is in these terms that Nadine Girault summarizes the adoption of a resolution against the Russian invasion of Ukraine at the International Organization of La Francophonie (OIF).
In an interview Thursday evening, on her return from Paris, the Minister of International Relations recalled the day Wednesday, which was almost entirely devoted to weighing and weighing each of the words of the resolution.
“We had to pass this point in the morning, finally, we passed it at the very end of the day because it was still negotiating during the day. It was a resolution that was very difficult to negotiate,” said the minister.
She said she had her very first experience of “pure diplomacy” there.
“Russia, for its part, made calls too, there, put pressure too. We weren’t told, but we felt it. There are African countries which are very well supported by Russia, which have been supported in recent years by Russia. We felt it in the discussions.
“A lot of work has been done to make everyone realize that yes, we each have our interests; on the other hand, it is necessary to look at the global interest”, reports Mme Girault.
The member countries of the OIF finally adopted by consensus a three-page resolution, which “vigorously condemns” the Russian invasion and “condemns the violations of international law, […] including the violation of the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Ukraine”.
They demanded an immediate and unconditional ceasefire, as well as the withdrawal by Russia of its military forces, and called for a peaceful and rapid settlement of the ongoing conflict.
This resolution was adopted within the framework of the 40and extraordinary session of the Ministerial Conference of La Francophonie, 21 days after the start of the war in Ukraine.
Ukraine is an observer member of the OIF.
In recent weeks, Quebec and Canada have pleaded in favor of an unequivocal condemnation of Russia’s military aggression against Ukraine.
Mme Girault called the OIF’s silence “astonishing”, saying she would go to Paris to “press” for the organization to adopt an official position.
“Honestly, I’m very happy. It is a resolution which is solid, which is firm, which goes in the same direction as the motion which we had adopted in the National Assembly, ”she said on Thursday.
Joly congratulates the OIF
At the end of the conference in Paris, the Canadian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mélanie Joly, also congratulated the OIF for speaking out against the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
She stressed that as the second largest international organization, La Francophonie has a strong voice in the world and can contribute to diplomatic efforts aimed at finding a solution to the crisis.
“This extraordinary session was of particular importance,” said Mr.me Joly by press release, Thursday.
“The invasion of Ukraine […] runs counter to the values of peace and solidarity that constitute the foundation of La Francophonie. These values […] are embedded and […] are at the heart of its actions.
“Canada commends the members of the OIF for speaking out against the military aggression ordered by the President [Vladimir] Putin towards Ukraine”, concluded Mr.me Pretty.
The OIF has 88 states and governments: 54 members, 7 associate members and 27 observers.