New Initiative Aims to Put Democratic Values at Center of Security Policy

June 30, 2016

The Community of Democracies launches a year-long effort to bring governments together in a consultative process to develop best practices for security based on respect for democracy and human rights.

The Democracy and Security Dialogue, led by former Tunisian Prime Minister Mehdi Jomaa and former U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, will address the rising security challenges and increased threats from violent extremism through global consultations with governments and civil society. 

"Our aim is to foster a dialogue and produce a report on two tracks – first, exploring democratic strategies to counter terrorism and violent extremism; and second, reinforcing the argument between democracy and peace," Secretary Albright said during the public launch event at the United States Institute of Peace in Washington. "We will do so with no preconceived notions, except for the realization that while democracy is not perfect, it still can be the most important generator of prosperity and stability." (Full remarks)

The Community of Democracies, an organization dedicated to common action among democracies, has developed the Democracy and Security Dialogue to foster greater collaboration among democracies with the ultimate goal of increasing security and creating a more hospitable environment for the strengthening of democracy around the world. 

"Efforts to counter security threats are greatly enhanced by adherence to democratic norms and an unyielding commitment to human rights," Secretary General Leissner said in Washington. "Some take them for granted, but these democratic principles are an integral part of the global architecture, creating an enabling environment for peace, stability, innovation and growth. Democracy protects the minority from the majority. It ensures that law is king. And, over the long haul, democracy enhances security." (Full remarks)

The public launch event was followed by the first in a series of private workshops that will bring governments and civil-society stakeholders to discuss best practices for security policies that are in line with the 19 core democratic principles found in the Warsaw Declaration that 106 states signed in 2000.