Statute

STATUTE OF THE
INTERNATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF PEACE MESSENGER CITIES

Preamble

Whereas, in recognition of the distinctive contributions that they had made to the objectives and programmes of the International Year of Peace (1986), in accordance with paragraph 3 of UN General Assembly resolution A/RES/40/3, the Secretary-General of the United Nations, Mr. Javier Perez de Cuellar, designated sixty-eight cities from around the world as "Messengers of Peace" 

Whereas on the initiative of the Mayor of Verdun, France, mayors and/or their representatives from those sixty-two cities met in Verdun from 7-8 September 1988, and in the presence of the Secretary-General of the United Nations, expressed their firm belief that municipal authorities have a profound responsibility to assume an active and creative role to play within their borders in establishing a culture of peace

Whereas, the Secretary-General acknowledged the role of the cities, in his words: “...in the building of a world less violent and more humane, a world of tolerance and of mutual respect to enable the requirements of peace based on justice and human rights to be better

Whereas, the representatives of those cities agreed to create an Association called the International Association of Peace Messenger Cities, and henceforth pledged to make use of various means at their disposal to contribute effectively and in close collaboration with the United Nations, to the building of peace worldwide

Whereas, in 1996, the Secretary-General of the United Nations formally authorised the association to designate new and additional Peace Messenger Cities under specific guidelines.

Recalling that in recognition of the active service of the Association in the cause of international peace and understanding and in its support of the United Nations as an instrument for achieving that goal, the Secretary-General expressed the hope and conviction that the designation of new and additional Peace Messenger Cities will strengthen the Association and enhance its activities,

Therefore, members of the International Association of Peace Messenger Cities subscribe to this Statute and Articles of Association and agree to strive to contribute to and ensure the realisation of the principles and objectives of the United Nations, namely the strengthening of peace and cooperation between and among peoples.

 

Article 1

Aims and Objectives

1.  The Association is established to encourage cities to help create a culture of peace and has as it aims:

  • to promote understanding between peoples
  • to enable the promotion of solidarity between them
  • to spread the spirit of peace, tolerance and mutual respect
  • to promote efforts aimed at combating wars, hunger and natural disasters
  • to ensure that governments understand that nuclear disarmament is a primary necessity, as are the protection of human rights, liberty and the free movement of individuals.

2. It shall engage in a number of activities, particularly in the following fields:

  • Education and information
  • Youth
  • Culture
  • Sports
  • Environmental protection
  • Enhancement of quality of life

 

Article 2

Registered Address

 The administrative office and registered address of the Association shall be the city of the incumbent Secretary-General of the Association. Any decision to change the location shall require a two-thirds majority of members present and voting in the General Assembly.

Article 3

Membership

1.     In addition to the cities originally designated by the Secretary-General of the United Nations as “Messengers of Peace Cities,” those which subsequently request and are approved and designated by the General Assembly of the Association as “Messengers of Peace” shall be Members of the Association.

2.     Membership is open to all cities which accept the principles and objectives of the

3.     Admission to membership shall be granted by the General Assembly on the recommendation of the Executive Board.

4.     Members may initiate practical ways and means of cooperation with other members at the national, regional and continental level, including where necessary, the establishment of social, cultural and information centres to help promote the aims and 5. Each member undertakes to pay its subscription regularly and on time.

5.     A member which is in arrears in the payment of its subscription for a period of two consecutive years shall lose its right to vote in both the Executive Board and the General

6.    Prior to effecting implementation of paragraph 6 above, due account shall be taken of any special or mitigating circumstances of the member concerned.

Article 4

Separation from and suspension of membership

1.     Any member may exercise its right to separate from the Association by resignation after due written notice addressed to the Secretary-General. Former members may also have their membership restored by a written request to the Secretary-General of the Association.

2.     A member whose actions or activities in the opinion of the General Assembly are seriously inconsistent with the aims and objectives of the Association may be suspended from membership. The right of the member concerned to due process shall be fully respected. The decision to suspend or lift a suspension of a member shall be taken by a two-thirds majority present and voting in the General Assembly.

Article 5

Honorary members and Observers

The General Assembly may bestow honorary membership to individuals or legal entities in recognition of their outstanding contributions to the cause of peace. Honorary members shall have no voting rights. The General Assembly may also accord observer status to any city on the recommendation of the Executive Board. Honorary Members and Observers may attend meetings of the General Assembly without the right to vote.

Article 6

Resources

The financial resources of the Association are derived from:

(a)  Membership subscriptions

(b)  Subsidies

(c)  Donations, gifts and bequests

Article 7

Functional bodies

The functional bodies of the Association are:

(a) The General Assembly and 
(b) The Executive Board

The General Assembly

The General Assembly is the supreme body of the Association. It comprises the Mayors of all the member cities of the Association or their official representatives. It defines the general direction and major principles of the Association’s actions. The following are its specific

1.     Elects the President, the four Vice Presidents, the Secretary-General, the Deputy Secretary-General and other members of the Executive Board

2.    Designates new “Messengers of Peace” cities and approves the admission, suspension or the lifting of suspension of members upon the recommendation of the Executive Board. Also decides on the dissolution of the Association

3.    Approves as necessary the operations and programmes prepared and recommended by the Executive Board

4.    Approves the budget

5.    Fixes the amount of the membership fee

6.    Decides on the acceptance or refusal of donations, gifts and bequests

7.    Approves and ratifies agreements entered into between the Association and other international organizations, and in particular arrangements with associations, organizations and other entities pursuing similar aims and objectives

8.    Amends or revises the Statute when necessary

9.    Considers other relevant matters referred to it by the Executive Board.

 

Special Commissions of the General Assembly

The General Assembly may establish special commissions constituted within its membership to undertake, coordinate, facilitate or promote any activity related to the aims and objectives of the Association.

Article 10

Sessions of the General Assembly

The General Assembly shall meet annually in Ordinary Session convened by the Executive Board. The date of such session shall be determined and communicated to members at least six months in advance. The Assembly may also meet in Extraordinary Session at the request of either the Executive Board or two-thirds of its members.

Article 11

Decision-making by the General Assembly

All decisions of the General Assembly, with the exception of those pertaining to Article 2, Article 4 (2), Article 10 and Article 22 (2), shall be taken by a simple majority of members present and voting. In the event of a tie the President shall cast the deciding vote.

Article 12

The Executive Board

The operations of the Association shall be managed by the Executive Board. Elected by the General Assembly it shall comprise up to eleven (11) members including the President, up to four Vice Presidents, the Secretary-General, the Deputy Secretary-General, and other members.

The term of office of the Board shall be three years. Members are eligible for re-election. If the Executive Board member city is in arrears with the payment of membership fee for two consecutive years, it automatically loses its position from the Executive Office.

 The principal functions of the Executive Board are as follows:

1.  Directs and manages the operations of the Association in accordance with the decisions and guidance of the General Assembly

2.  Establishes its internal working methods and general procedures

3.  Initiates, formulates and recommends programmes for the realization of the Association’s aims and objectives

4. Examines requests for new members, honorary members and observers, and makes appropriate recommendations to the General Assembly

5.  Appoints an Auditor from among its members

6.  Prepares and presents the budget to the General Assembly

7.  Presents the President’s Report and the Financial Report of the Association

8.  Convenes the Sessions of the General Assembly and prepares the agenda.

Article 13

Meetings of the Executive Board

1.  The Executive Board shall meet twice a year in Ordinary Session, the second of which shall immediately precede the session of the General Assembly.

2. It may also meet in Extraordinary Session convened at the request of either five of its members or by the President in consultation with the Vice Presidents. The presence of seven of its members shall constitute a quorum.

3.  “Presence” is interpreted as physical or live electronic participation in any segment of the deliberations of the Board.

4.  A member unable to attend may be represented by another duly authorized member of the Board or communicate his/her views on any issue on the agenda directly to the meeting through the President or the Deputy Secretary-General.

Notice to convene a meeting shall be communicated by the President to members at least sixty days prior to the meeting. Such notice shall include the agenda and relevant documents.

Article 14

Decision-making by the Executive Board

Decisions of the Board shall be taken by a simple majority of members present and voting. In the event of a tie the President shall cast the deciding vote.

Article 15

Records of meetings

Proceedings of meetings and sessions shall be documented in the official Minute Book maintained in the administrative office of the Association. A copy of the minutes, signed by the President and the Secretary-General shall be sent to each member of the Association within two months of the conclusion of the meeting.

Article 16

The President

The President is the principal officer and official representative of the Association. He/she is

1.  Presides over meetings of the General Assembly and the Executive Board.

2.  Represents the Association in all matters pertaining to its external relations, including attendance at conferences, meetings and other gatherings to which the Association is

3. Monitors international developments especially in the fields listed in Article 1(2) above, and initiates proposals for the Association’s response or engagement.

4.  Signs official documents and related material on behalf of the Association.

5.  Promotes the aims and objectives of the Association and encourages non-member Municipalities to join the Association.

6.  Performs other responsibilities as authorized by the General Assembly.

Article 17

The Vice Presidents

There shall be up to four (4) Vice Presidents elected with due consideration of maintaining geographical balance in the membership of the Executive Board. They are entrusted with the

1.   Assist the President in the performance of his/her functions, especially in promoting the aims and objectives of the Association in their respective regions and monitoring international and /or regional developments related to the fields listed in Article 1(2)

2.  Act as coordinators, where possible, in their respective municipalities for Association-sponsored events, such as the observance of the International Day of Peace Liaise with the President, the Secretary-General and Deputy Secretary-General, as necessary, in order to enhance the effectiveness of the Executive Board as well as the capacity of a Vice President to act as President ad interim.

3.     Chair any special Commission established by the General Assembly in accordance with

Article 18

Delegation of Presidential authority

The President may request any of the Vice Presidents or the Secretary-General to undertake any specific activity within the purview of the presidency or to represent him/her in any function under Article 16 (2) above. In the event of incapacity or of an unforeseen vacancy, the Executive Board shall designate, preferably by consensual agreement, a President ad interim from among the four Vice Presidents, pending elections by the General Assembly pursuant to Article 8 (1) of the present Statute.

Article 19

a) The Secretary-General

The Secretary-General is the chief administrative officer of the Association.

1.    Working directly with the Executive Board and in close consultation with the President and with the assistance of the Deputy Secretary-General, he/she is responsible for coordinating and leading the business affairs of the Association.

2.    He/she monitors implementation of decisions of the Executive Board and the General Assembly.

3.    He/she shall be the custodian of the official documents, including the Minute Book and related materials of the Association.

4.   The Secretary-General shall also perform the functions of treasurer of the Association and in collaboration with the Deputy Secretary-General manage the financial resources of the Association.

5.   He/she shall prepare the budget and financial report for the consideration by the Executive Board and subsequent presentation to the General Assembly.

6.   He/she shall make recommendations for strengthening the financial capacity of the Association.

7.   In the event that the Secretary-General is unavailable or incapacitated to perform the functions, the Executive Board shall designate, preferably by consensual agreement, a Secretary-General ad interim from among the members of the Association, pending elections by the General Assembly pursuant to Article 8 (1) of the present Statute.


b) The Deputy Secretary-General

1.    The Deputy Secretary-General shall assist the Secretary-General in the performance of his/her functions, and shall also fulfil the duties and responsibilities of Secretary-General in the absence of the incumbent.

2.    The Deputy Secretary-General may come from the city of the incumbent Secretary-General.

3.    He/she shall act as Rapporteur at meetings and sessions of the General Assembly and the Executive Board.

4.    As and when appropriate he/she may serve as a special assistant to the President.

5.    In the event of incapacity or unforeseen vacancy the Deputy Secretary-General shall assume the position of Secretary-General ad interim pending elections by the General Assembly pursuant to Article 8 (1) of the present Statute.

6.    In the event that the Deputy Secretary-General is unavailable or incapacitated to perform the functions, the Executive Board shall designate, preferably by consensual agreement, a Deputy Secretary-General ad interim from among the members of the Association, pending elections by the General Assembly pursuant to Article 8 (1) of the present Statute.

Article 21

Amendment and revision of the Statute

This Statute may be amended, revised or repealed by the General Assembly at an Ordinary or Extraordinary Session by the affirmative vote of two-thirds of the members present or duly

Article 22

Dissolution

1.  The duration of the International Association of Peace Messenger Cities indeterminate.

2.  The General Assembly may decide to dissolve it at an Extraordinary Session convened for that purpose, by a vote of two-thirds of the entire membership.

3.  In the event of dissolution, and once all its financial and related obligations had been met, the General Assembly shall bequeath the funds and properties of the Association to the United Nations or any other international organization dedicated to the world peace.

Article 23

Application of the Statute

The present Statute revises the original Statute of Verdun (1988) and the provisions and amendments adopted in Sochi (2008), Cyprus (2010) and Slovenj Gradec (2012). It shall take effect immediately following its adoption by the General Assembly.

 

Accepted in Kalavrita, Greece, at the 27th General Assembly session of the International Association of Peace Messenger Cities on 11 December 2014.