Cartagena Commitment to Democracy (XIV Summit of Heads of State and Government of the Rio Group, 2000)

The Heads of State and Government of the Rio Group, meeting in the city of Cartagena de Indias, on the occasion of the XIV Summit of Heads of State and Government of the Rio Group, reaffirm our unshakeable commitment to peace, strengthening of democracy and promotion of social and economic development of our peoples, as principles that guide the actions of our Governments, in both their domestic and international policies.

We reaffirm our firm conviction that democracy, development and respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms are interdependent and mutually reinforcing.

As the new millennium unfolds, we reaffirm our intention to strengthen representative democracy as a system of government, promote its values as a way of life and defend the institution of democracy and the rule of law in Latin America and the Caribbean .

We wish to express, in particular, our commitment to periodic elections based on the principles of legality, transparency and equity and organized and sanctioned by independent organs of the State.

We also express our intention to improve the quality of our democratic institutions, through greater social integration and the effective, ethical and responsible participation of our citizens.

We believe that closer integration among our nations guarantees the strengthening of democracy and promotes peaceful coexistence in and among the nations of the hemisphere.

Cartagena de Indias , 16 June 2000