Cuba: Copenhagen has no legitimacy

Issue 

The letter published below was sent by Cuban first deputy environment minister Fernando Gonzalez to Yvo de Boer, who is the executive secretary of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, The December UN climate summit in Copenhagen ended in a farce with an "agreement" drawn up behind close doors by a select group of rich nations, which tried to force it on the rest of the world.

Many Third World nations refused to accept the agreement, which failed to demand significant cuts in carbon emissions by rich First World nations while demanding that any cuts be implemented equally by First and Third World nations — despite the overwhelming responsibility for carbon emissions lying with the rich nations.

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Mr Executive Secretary,

Once again I address myself to you with regards to the results outcome of the Fifteenth Conference of the Parties to the Convention, particularly your unexpected notification dated January 18, 2010, inviting all State Parties to associate with the so-called Copenhagen Accord.

In keeping with my letters to you dated December 30 and 31, 2009, I hereby reiterate the most absolute rejection on the part of my government to the illegitimate attempt to impose an agreement that did not emanate from collective deliberations by the conference or any decision adopted by the parties.

It is with utmost concern that we observe that the convention secretariat, instead of resorting to prudence and neutrality in the interest of preserving the integrity of the negotiation process and the decisions adopted by the conference, seems to have succumbed to the interests of those who illegally and arrogantly intend to impose that accord on the international community.

Far more serious is the attempt to ascribe to the Copenhagen Accord an alleged legal character that could have only been conferred by the conference.

The appeal you have launched to the parties to the convention for them to associate with the so called Copenhagen Accord, as well as the legal character ascribed to said accord, are a gross violation of the mandate vested upon you as executive secretary to the convention.

This infringes upon the principle of neutrality that should prevail in the work of the secretariat and usurps the prerogatives that exclusively belong to the conference. This creates a dangerous precedent, contrary to the multilateral essence of the convention and the rules and procedures that have guided its works since it came into force.

We are extremely alarmed by the way in which the convention secretariat has yielded to the maneuvers orchestrated by a group of developed countries in an attempt to kill the Kyoto Protocol and legitimise an agreement that resulted from an anti-democratic and exclusive process that has ignored most of the parties to the convention.

Consequently, and aware of the implications that such arbitrary actions could have for the negotiation process, I urge the secretariat to rectify this violation of procedures and take all necessary measures to prevent proceedings as unfortunate as those that prevailed during the Copenhagen conference to occur again.