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Valletta Statement on Multilateral Trade -  The Valletta Statement on Multilateral Trade was issued as part of the 2005 Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in Malta. The Statement urged the WTO Ministerial Conference in Hong Kong – scheduled for 13-18 December 2005 – to agree that all forms of export subsidies be eliminated by 2010. Click here to read a full copy of the Statement.
Vance-Owen Plan -  The ‘Vance-Owen Plan’ may refer to the joint proposals developed by US Secretary of State Cyrus R Vance and British Foreign Secretary David Owen in the late 1970s to secure ‘one man, one vote’ rule in Rhodesia. An alternative ‘Vance-Owen Plan’ would be the peace plans developed by then-UN Special Envoy Vance and EC representative Lord Owen to secure peace between warring factions in Bosnia in the early 1990s.
Vella Pillay -  Vella Pillay (1923-2004) was a South African economist and political activist who helped organise anti-apartheid campaigns while living in London, UK. Pillay was a member of the Transvaal Indian Congress, the South African Indian Congress and the South African Communist Party (SACP). He moved to London in 1949 to study at the London School of Economics and there participated in the founding of the Anti-Apartheid Movement (AAM). Serving as AAM’s Treasurer and later Vice-Chairman, he was also editor of the monthly Anti-Apartheid News.
Velupillai Prabhakaran -  Velupillai Prabhakaran (1954-2009) was a Sri Lankan militant figure who founded and led the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), a secessionist organisation calling for an independent Tamil state. Prabhakaran was a major figure in the decades-long Sri Lankan Civil War.
Venda -  A quasi-independent state founded within South Africa for the Venda people. Formed in 1973 by the apartheid government and abolished in 1994.
Verkrampte -  The Verkrampte were a section of the South African National Party who favored strict segregation in all areas of society.
Verligte -  (Afrikaans, literally ‘enlightened’). A liberal or reformist member of a white political party during apartheid-era South Africa.
Vernon Mwaanga -  Vernon Mwaanga (b. 1939). Zambian politician, he held positions including Minister of Foreign Affairs (1973-1975, 1991-1994).
Veronica Sutherland -  Veronica Sutherland (b. 1939). British diplomat, Commonwealth Deputy General-Secretary (1999-2001).
Versailles Peace Conference -  The peace conference held in Paris in 1919 to establish terms for the conclusion of World War I. Concluded with the Treaty of Versailles.
Victor Ayeni -  Dr Victor Ayeni served the Commonwealth Secretariat as Director of Governance and Institutional Development at Marlborough House, London. Ayeni has also advised President Olusegun Obasanjo on public sector reform in Nigeria, and in 2007 founded a training and consultancy firm advising on governance issues in developing countries.
Victor Gbeho -  James Victor Gbeho (b.1935) is a Ghanian lawyer and diplomat who was Minister of Foreign Affairs under President Jerry Rawlings from 1997 to 2001. During a long career in Ghana’s Foreign and Commonwealth Service, Gbeho held postings in China, India, Nigeria, Germany, the United Kingdom and Switzerland. From 1980 to 1990 he was Ghana’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations in New York.
Victor Pungong -  Dr Victor Pungong (1967- 2007) was a Cameroonian diplomat who served as Deputy Director of Political Affairs in the Commonwealth Secretariat.
Victoria League -  The Victoria League for Commonwealth Friendship was established in 1901 to promote “friendship and hospitality across the Commonwealth nations”. In addition to fundraising, education and social initiatives, the League runs a Student House in London for Commonwealth students.
Vieira -  Sergio Vieira. Mozambican politician. He was a member of the FRELIMO party and Security Minister at the time of the signing of the Nkomati Accord.
Vijaya Lakshmi Pandit -  Vijaya Lakshmi Nehru Pandit (1990-1990) was an Indian political figure and diplomat who served as India’s ambassador to the Soviet Union (1947-49), United States and Mexico (1949-51), Ireland (1955-61) and Spain (1958-61). She was High Commissioner to the UK from 1955 to 1961 and headed the Indian delegation to the United Nations from 1946 to 1968. A member of the influential Nehru family, she was the sister of India’s first Prime Minister, Jawaharlal Nehru.
Vince Cable -  Vince Cable (b. 1943). British politician and member of the Liberal Democrat party. He was economic advisor to the Commonwealth Secretary-General in the 1970s and 80s.
Vishnu Persaud -  Dr Bishnodat ‘Vishnu’ Persaud, b.1933 in Guyana, served the Commonwealth Secretariat from 1974 to 1992, acting as Director and Head of the Economic Division from 1981. He lectured at the University of the West Indies from 1992-1996 and later became a member of the UN Secretary-General’s High-Level Committee on Development Policy and the UN Expert Group on the Vulnerability of Small States.
- Synonyms: Bishnodat Persaud
Vladimir Shubin -  Vladimir Shubin (b.1939) is a former Soviet military adviser and academic who played a prominent role in African politics as Secretary of the Soviet Afro-Asian Solidarity Committee and Head of the African Section in the CPSU International Department. Following the unbanning of the African National Congress in South Africa, Shubin acted as the Soviet representative to its National Conference. Since 1992 he has been a Research Fellow and Director at the Institute for African Studies, Russian Academy of Sciences.
VSO volunteer -  A VSO volunteer refers to a volunteer with the international development charity Voluntary Service Overseas (VSO). Founded in 1958 in London, VSO coordinates the recruitment of professionals to work in developing countries alongside local community groups. It focuses particularly on education, health, governance and secure livelihoods.