Covenant establishing the Unrepresented Nations and Peoples Organization
Title I: General Provisions
Title II: Provisions Governing Participation
Title III: Provisions Governing Institutions
Section I: The Assembly
Section II: The Steering Committee
Section III: The Secretariat
Section IV: Regional Chapters
Title IV: Financial Provisions
Title V: Termination of Participation
Title VI: Liquidation of the Organisation
Title VII: Amendments to the Covenant
Affirming the principles of Democracy, as enshrined in the Vienna declaration, as fundamental and inalienable human rights;
Noting that political and civil rights are guaranteed to individuals and communities through international law and binding covenants, such as the International Covenants on Civil and Political Rights and the International Covenant on Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights;
Aware that individual rights are inextricably linked to the recognition and protection of collective rights, as well as the free expression of collective identity, religious beliefs, and dignity;
Convinced that the existence and enjoyment of these political and civil rights are themselves the product of past struggles and solidarity, and that a continued and committed effort is still necessary in order to achieve their universal and effective implementation;
Whereas the right to self-determination is enshrined in the United Nations Charter, the International Covenants on Civil and Political Rights, the International Covenant on Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights, and the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, its implementation should be based on its broadest and most comprehensive understanding; including autonomy, devolution, and power-sharing, and federalism in all its forms, rejecting thereby a narrow focus and charges of secessionism;
Convinced that the principles, methodology, and practice of Gandhian nonviolence and nonviolent civil-resistance are the most effective means of pursuing and enforcing both collective and individual rights, we, the undersigned Nations and Peoples, reaffirm our unreserved commitment to such principles, rejecting in the process terrorism, extremism, and violence in all its forms;
Convinced that the protection of the environment and its natural resources, in particular in the context of climate change and related shortages of potable water, is linked to the fundamental rights of Nations and Peoples everywhere, necessitating respect for the enshrined rights of free, prior, and informed consent, so as to guarantee their right to determine their own future and the protection and respect for their ancestral lands and resources;
Aware that whilst the forceful transfer of populations and other forms of demographic manipulation, including ethnic cleansing, represent serious breaches of universal rights, the free circulation of ideas, information, people, and capital should be guaranteed as central to the promotion and affirmation of freedom and democracy everywhere;
by the present Covenant, the Participating Nations and Peoples, represented by the undersigned Representatives, establish among themselves the Unrepresented Nations and Peoples Organization (the "Organization").
It shall be the aim af the Organization, by assisting Participating Nations and Peoples (“Participants”) to express their positions, needs and grievances in legitimate forums and by providing a community of support, to advance the fulfilment of the aspirations of Participating Nations and Peoples by effective non-violent means.
For the purposes set out in Article 1, the activities of the Organization shall include, but shall not be limited to:
a) the facilitation of consultation, exchange of views and experiences, and cooperation with each other, to the extent desired by the Participants;
b) assistance in effectively utilising available procedures of United Nations bodies and specialised agencies and of other international and regional organisations;
c) training in bilateral and multilateral diplomacy, including United Nations diplomacy and the principles of international law;
d) training in negotiation skills and professional assistance in conflict management and resolution;
e) training in non-violent strategies and professional assistance in the development of strategic plans and policies;
f) professional legal and public relations advice;
g) providing an information service for the dissemination of information provided by Participants to the public and among their own people;
h) assistance in the development of democratic institutions and processes and in the monitoring of elections and referenda;
i) assistance in the development and implementation of measures designed to protect the natural environment and the creation of sustainable development projects.
a) The achievement of the tasks entrusted to the Organization shall be ensured by:
a Steering Committee
Each of these institutions shall act within the limits of the powers conferred upon in this Covenant.
b) The institutions listed in subsection (a) of this Article may be assisted by an Advisory Council, acting in a consultative capacity, and various specialised bodies such as a Legal Council, an Environmental advisory Committee or an Agency for Conflict Management and Resolution acting under the direction of the Secretariat.
Each Participant shall take general and specific measures which are appropriate to assist the Organization in achieving its aims and shall refrain from actions intended or reasonably expected to harm the Organization or impede its activities.
Provisions Governing Participation
Participation is open to all Nations and Peoples who are not adequately represented at the United Nations and whose Representative Body, as defined in Article 6 of this Title, fulfils all requirements set out in this Title and declares:
a) Belief in the equality of all Nations and Peoples and in their inalienable right to self determination;
b) Adherence to the internationally accepted human rights standards as laid down in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the International Covenant of Civil and Political Rights and Economic, Social and Cultural Rights;
c) Adherence to the principles of democratic pluralism and rejection of totalitarianism and any forms of religious intolerance;
d) Rejection of terrorism as an instrument of policy;
e) Respect for all peoples and population groups, including minority or majority populations within territories inhabited by the Participant but belonging to different ethnic, religious or linguistic groups.
For the purposes of this Covenant:
a) A Nation or People shall mean a group of human beings which possesses the will to be identified as a nation or people and to determine its common destiny as a nation or people, and is bound to a common heritage which can be historical, racial, ethnic, linguistic, cultural, religious or territorial. A section of a people constituting a minority, living on a portion of its ancestral territory, incorporated into a State other than a State represented by that People, is included in this Article’s definition.
b) Representative Body shall mean a government, legislative body, liberation movement or other organ of leadership, whether in the territory of the Nations or People or in exile, recognised as such by a substantial section of the people which the Representative Body claims to represent; a Representative Body can also mean a coordinating organisation or other form of association of two or more organs of leadership of one Nation or People or an organisation or association of two or more Nations and Peoples.
A Nation or People, through its Representative Body, may apply to become a Participant in the Organization by submitting the following information to the Secretariat for consideration by the Steering Committee:
a) a brief history of the Nation or People;
b) the reasons for the desire to become a participant in the Organization;
c) adequate evidence of the recognition of the Representative Body as an organ of leadership by the people it claims to represent;
d) a formal declaration of adhesion to the present Covenant;
The Steering Committee, on recommendation of the General Secretary, will decide on all applications. The Assembly may overrule this decision by a vote of two-thirds majority.
Participation in the Organization does not in any way imply agreement among Participating Nations and Peoples on each other’s objectives, policies, or allegiances and does not require any form of cooperation or solidarity beyond what is contained in this Covenant.
Participants favour the use of peaceful means to achieve their goals. Participants shall not use the Organization or any of its bodies, specialised agencies or services in its name, to promote the use of violence.
Provisions Governing Institutions
Section I: The Assembly
The Assembly, which shall be composed of delegations representing participating Nations and Peoples, shall exercise the powers of deliberation and control which are conferred upon it by this Covenant.
Each delegation shall have the right to one vote in the Assembly.
The Assembly shall hold regular sessions at least once every two years. The Assembly may meet in extraordinary sessions at the request of a majority of Participants or at the request of the Steering Committee. The Assembly shall elect its Chairperson at the beginning of every session. The Chairperson shall serve in the function until a successor is elected.
The Assembly shall adopt the agenda at the start of each session on the basis of recommendations of the Steering Committee and the General Secretary.
The Assembly shall act by a simple majority of votes of delegations present. The quorum shall be laid down in the rules of procedure.
The Steering Committee or the General Secretary may invite individuals, governmental or non governmental Organizations or States to attend as Observers to the regular sessions of the Assembly, subject to the approval of the Assembly. The Assembly shall decide on the rights and duties of Observers by a simple majority.
Section II: The Steering Committee
The Steering Committee shall be composed of five to fifteen persons, each representing one Participant, who will serve for a term of three years.
The Steering Committee shall meet at least twice a year. The Steering Committee shall adopt its own rules of procedure.
The Steering Committee shall implement the overall policy of the Organization as determined by the Assembly, The Steering Committee shall possess all of the powers delegated to it by the Assembly.
Section III: The Secretariat
The Secretariat shall consist of a General Secretary and assistant appointed by him or her. Members of the Secretariat need not belong to a Nation or People represented in the Organisation. The General Secretary shall serve as the executive director of the Organisation, and shall be elected by the Assembly for a three-year, renewable term.
The duties of the General Secretary shall include:
a) to direct the day-to-day operations of the Organisation;
b) to represent the Organization;
c) to establish and operate bank accounts for the benefit of the Organisation;
d) to maintain proper and regular books of accounts of all receipts and payments of the Organization, including the creation of an annual balance sheet;
e) to present status reports annually to the Participants and to the Steering Committee. These reports shall include the following information: the names and addresses of representatives of Participants and of members of the Steering Committee, and a description of the overall financial situation of the Organization and a description of the activities of the Organisation during the previous year, including any additions, changes or amendments to the Covenant;
f) to coordinate the activities of Regional Chapters in order to better accomplish the aims and objectives of the Organisation; and
g) to perform any duties delegated or requested by the Assembly or Steering Committee.
Section IV: Regional Chapters
The Regional Chapters shall be established for the purpose of supporting the Organisation and its activities, including the solicitation of funds. The statutes and bylaws of each of the Regional Chapters shall ensure that they shall exist for no other purpose, and shall expressly incorporate this Covenant by reference or otherwise.
Funding for the Organization shall come from Participants, and from international Organizations, corporate or private contributions and fundraising activities.
Termination of Participation
Participants may terminate their membership in the Organization if they desire upon sending formal notice to the General Secretary. Termination shall be effective upon receipt of notice by the General Secretary.
A Nation or People which becomes a member of the United Nations has the moral duty to remain a supporting member of the Organisation and to take part in the work of the Assembly without a vote.
Liquidation of the Organization
The Organisation shall cease to exist if
a) Participants unanimously so decide; or
b) In the event all Participants obtain independent representation at the United Nations.
Amendments to the Covenant
Amendments to the Covenant shall be approved by three-fourths of the Participants.
(Amended August, 1991)
The Assembly shall act by a simple majority of votes of delegations present, unless stated otherwise in the Assembly Rules of Procedure.
The quorum shall be laid down in the rules of procedure.
(Amended March, 1995)