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Appeal to the Commonwealth by Nobel Laureates

We, Nobel Prizewinners associated with countries which have benefited from Commonwealth support for democracy, the rule of law and human rights, now appeal to governments, parliamentarians and the peoples of the Commonwealth.
The Commonwealth is engaged in preparing a Charter to set out its fundamental values, which will stress commitment to democracy, the rule of law and human rights. We ask those responsible not to sign any Charter which fails to include a credible, authoritative and specific mechanism to verify serious breaches of these principles and recommend healing and redress, to make more effective the work of the Commonwealth Secretary-General and the Commonwealth Ministerial Action Group of Foreign Ministers.
The Commonwealth in the 21st century must leave behind its repetitive rhetoric. It has to do more to realise its principles for the benefit of citizens. A Charter which lacks improved implementation will be a service sheet for the Commonwealth’s funeral.
Nadine Gordimer
Nobel Prize in Literature 1991
Wole Soyinka
The Nobel Prize in Literature 1986
Archbishop Desmond Tutu
Nobel Peace Prize 1984

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