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Commonwealth Ministerial Action Group

This article is about the diplomatic group. For the firearm magazine, see Beta C-Mag.

The Commonwealth Ministerial Action Group on the Harare Declaration, abbreviated to CMAG, is a group of representatives of members of the Commonwealth of Nations that is responsible for upholding the Harare Declaration. That Declaration dictates the Commonwealth's fundamental political values,[1] and sets the core membership criteria of the organisation. Its remit to evaluate the Harare Declaration lapses every two years; the remit must be renewed and its membership reviewed by the biennial Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting.

CMAG was established in November 1995 at Millbrook Resort, in Queenstown, New Zealand, as a result of the Millbrook Commonwealth Action Programme, to punish serious or persistent violations of the Harare Declaration.[1] It is composed of the Foreign Ministers (or equivalent) of eight Commonwealth member states, which may be augmented by either one or two further representatives of a region or interest involved in a particular case.[1] There have been twenty-seven ordinary meetings, two special meetings, and one extraordinary meeting, called unevenly over the past twelve years.[2] For logistical reasons, 29 of the 30 meetings have been held in either London (headquarters of the Commonwealth) or New York City (headquarters of the United Nations).[2]

History

In its first meeting, CMAG decided that its initial focus would be upon the three (then-)military dictatorships of The Gambia, Nigeria, and Sierra Leone,[3] and approved of the Commonwealth's suspension of Nigeria from the organisation earlier in the year.[3] These three countries would form the mainstay of the work of CMAG, and form the whole of its reports, until the 1999 coup d'état in Pakistan necessitated it to vote unanimously to suspend Pakistan from the Commonwealth.[4] Nigeria's reintegration was deemed complete by 1999, when its suspension was lifted; indeed, it was chosen to be a member of CMAG prior to the thirteenth meeting.[5]

In 2000, the situations in Fiji and the Solomon Islands were put under permanent scrutiny,[6] as was that in Zimbabwe in 2001.[7] Gambia was taken off the group's formal agenda at the seventeenth meeting.[8] Due to its acrimonious withdrawal from the Commonwealth in 2003, the issue of Zimbabwe, which had dominated the affairs of the Commonwealth since 2001, became moot and was not discussed from 2004 onwards,[9] while Fiji was taken off the agenda due to encouraging progress in that country's political progress.[9]

At its twenty-fourth meeting, in September 2004, it was decided that (at least in principle) CMAG should meet once a year, and preferably in New York.[10] An extraordinary meeting was called for the 8 December 2006 in light of the 2006 coup d'état, at which it was decided to suspend Fiji's membership of the Commonwealth.[11]

On 12 November 2007, the Commonwealth gave Pakistan a 10-day deadline to restore its constitution and lift other emergency measures or face suspension. By 22 November 2007, the CMAG voted to suspend Pakistan from Commonwealth Membership.

Membership

Since 2003, the group has included the eight members, plus a representative of the Commonwealth Chairperson-in-Office's country. These have been, successively, Nigeria, Malta, Uganda, and Trinidad and Tobago.

Year I II III IV V VI VII VIII Ex officio
1995

Template:Country data Jamaica 23x15px Canada 23x15px New Zealand 23x15px Malaysia 23x15px United Kingdom 23x15px South Africa 23x15px Ghana 23x15px Zimbabwe V
A
C
A
N
T
1997

23x15px Barbados 23x15px Botswana
1999

23x15px Australia 23x15px Nigeria 23x15px Bangladesh
2002

23x15px Bahamas 23x15px Samoa Template:Country data India 23x15px Malta
2003

23x15px Canada 23x15px Lesotho 23x15px Tanzania 23x15px Sri Lanka 23x15px Nigeria
2005

23x15px Saint Lucia 23x15px Papua New Guinea 23x15px Malaysia 23x15px United Kingdom 23x15px Malta
2007

23x15px New Zealand 23x15px Namibia 23x15px Ghana 23x15px Uganda
2009

Template:Country data Jamaica 23x15px Australia 23x15px Bangladesh 23x15px Vanuatu 23x15px Maldives 23x15px Trinidad and Tobago
2011

23x15px Canada 23x15px Trinidad and Tobago 23x15px Tanzania 23x15px Sierra Leone 23x15px Australia
2013

23x15px Guyana 23x15px Solomon Islands 23x15px Pakistan 23x15px Cyprus Template:Country data India 23x15px New Zealand 23x15px Sri Lanka

Footnotes

  1. ^ a b c "Commonwealth Ministerial Action Group". Commonwealth of Nations. Retrieved 2007-07-22. 
  2. ^ a b "List of meetings". Commonwealth of Nations. Retrieved 2007-07-22. 
  3. ^ a b "First Meeting of the Commonwealth Ministerial Action Group on the Harare Declaration". Commonwealth of Nations. 1995-12-20. Retrieved 2007-07-22. 
  4. ^ "Special Meeting of the Commonwealth Ministerial Action Group on the Harare Declaration". Commonwealth of Nations. 1999-10-18. Retrieved 2007-07-22. 
  5. ^ "Thirteenth Meeting of the Commonwealth Ministerial Action Group on the Harare Declaration". Commonwealth of Nations. 2000-05-02. Retrieved 2007-07-22. 
  6. ^ "Special Meeting of the Commonwealth Ministerial Action Group on the Harare Declaration". Commonwealth of Nations. 2000-06-06. Retrieved 2007-07-22. 
  7. ^ "Sixteenth Meeting of the Commonwealth Ministerial Action Group on the Harare Declaration". Commonwealth of Nations. 2001-09-04. Retrieved 2007-07-22. 
  8. ^ "Seventeenth Meeting of the Commonwealth Ministerial Action Group on the Harare Declaration". Commonwealth of Nations. 2001-12-20. Retrieved 2007-07-22. 
  9. ^ a b "Twenty-third Meeting of the Commonwealth Ministerial Action Group on the Harare Declaration". Commonwealth of Nations. 2004-05-22. Retrieved 2007-07-22. 
  10. ^ "Twenty-fourth Meeting of the Commonwealth Ministerial Action Group on the Harare Declaration". Commonwealth of Nations. 2004-09-25. Retrieved 2007-07-22. 
  11. ^ "Extraordinary Meeting of the Commonwealth Ministerial Action Group on the Harare Declaration". Commonwealth of Nations. 2006-12-08. Retrieved 2007-07-22. 

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