AZERBAIJAN — THE NON-ALIGNED MOVEMENT
The Non-Aligned Movement (NAM), once established by a number of states during the Cold War to prevent confrontation between the two political-military Poles, has now become one of the important multilateral mechanisms involved in the regulation of international relations. One of the main principles of the establishment and functioning of the NAM, the purpose of which is to promote peace, security and development in the world on the basis of respect for international law, is to serve as a forum for cooperation among its members. The Non-Aligned Movement currently has 120, 18 observer states and 10 observer international organizations.
The Asia-Africa Conference held in Bandung, Indonesia in 1955, was the first significant step towards the establishment of the Non-Aligned Movement. 6 years after the Bandung Conference, on September 1-6, 1961, the institutional foundation of the Non-Aligned Movement was laid at the Summit held in Belgrade, former Yugoslavia with the participation of 25 heads of State and Government of Asia and Africa. Each member state of the organization must express its commitment to the principles of the organization. The “Bandung principles” are as follows:
- Respect the goals and principles of the UN Charter, as well as fundamental human rights and freedoms;
- Respect the territorial integrity and sovereignty of states;
- Recognized the equality of all races and peoples, regardless of their number;
- Avoiding interference in the internal affairs of other states;
- To respect the right of each state to defend itself individually or collectively within the framework of the UN Charter;
- Avoiding the use of collective defense measures to serve any special interests of the great powers;
- Refusal to engage in any activity directed against the territorial integrity and political independence of the other state, as well as the use of force and threats to use force;
- To resolve all international disputes peacefully, peacefully in accordance with the UN Charter;
- Promote mutual interest and cooperation
- Justice and respect international obligations.
The Non-Aligned Movement does not have a permanent headquarters. The bureau is the main body of NAM operating on a permanent basis and regulating intra-agency coordination. Through the Bureau, the NAM coordinates the performance of its members from a single position in the UN bodies. The management of the bureau is carried out by the permanent representatives of the state to the UN, who is the chairman of the organization. The state wishing to join the NAM should express its commitment to the fundamental principles of the movement and apply in writing to the chairman of the Non-Aligned Movement. The decision on membership is made by consensus.
On May 26, 2011, the Republic of Azerbaijan, which chose not to join any military alliance in its foreign policy, gained the unanimous support of the member states of the movement on the Indonesian island of Bali and became a full member of the NAM.
On May 09-10, 2012, in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt, a paragraph on the Armenian-Azerbaijani Nagorno-Karabakh conflict was included during the adoption of the final document at the next ministerial meeting of the Non-Aligned Movement coordinating Bureau and the member states of the NAM expressed support for the settlement on the conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan on the basis of the principles of respect for the territorial integrity of states, non-use of force against territorial integrity and inviolability of internationally recognized borders.
On August 30-31, 2012, at the 16th summit of heads of state and Government of the NAM held in Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran, article 391 of the final document states expressed support for the settlement of the conflict within the “territorial integrity, sovereignty and internationally recognized borders” of the Republic of Azerbaijan.
On May 28-29, 2014, the XVII ministerial meeting of the NAM was held in Algeria. NAM member states expressed their regret that the conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan remained unresolved despite relevant UN Security Council resolutions in paragraph 421 of the final document of the ministerial meeting and expressed their support for the settlement of the conflict within the territorial integrity of the Republic of Azerbaijan.
The final document of the Mid-Term Ministerial Conference of the Non-Aligned Movement held in conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan remained unresolved despite the relevant resolutions of the UN Security Council and expressed support for the settlement of the conflict within the territorial integrity of the Republic of Azerbaijan.
The Caracas final document, adopted at the end of the next Ministerial Meeting of the Coordinating Bureau of the Non-Aligned Movement held in Caracas, Venezuela on July 18-21, 2019, reiterated its support position reflected in previous documents on the Azerbaijan-Armenian conflict.
On October 25-26, 2019, the Republic of Azerbaijan hosted the 18th Summit of the heads of state and government of the movement in Baku. The event was attended by high-level representatives of 120 UN member states and representatives of 42 UN International organizations. During the Baku Summit, the Heads of State and Government expressed regret that, despite the relevant Un Security Council resolutions (S/RES/822, S/RES/853, S/RES/874, S/RES/884), the conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan remains unresolved and threatens international and regional peace and security, and called on the parties to continue negotiations on the settlement of the conflict on the basis of territorial integrity, sovereignty and made a call.
With the Baku Summit, the chairmanship of the movement was transferred to the Republic of Azerbaijan for 2019-2022. After Uganda, which will become the next chairman of the movement, stated that it could assume the chairmanship with a delay of 1 year, the NAM member states, taking into account the successful chairmanship of the movement, appealed to our country with a request to preside over the movement for another 1 year, the Azerbaijani side also responded positively to this appeal, considering its commitment to the fundamental principles and values of the movement and the valuable experience of effective chairmanship of the movement in a difficult period. Thus, Azerbaijan’s chairmanship in the NAM was extended until 2023.
The Coordinating Bureau of the Non-Aligned Movement adopted a communique on the so-called “elections” held in the occupied territories of the Republic of Azerbaijan on April 4,2020. It is stated in the communication that the member states of the movement do not recognize the so-called “presidential and parliamentary elections” held in the occupied Nagorno-Karabakh region of the Republic of Azerbaijan on March 31,2020 and consider this act illegal. Referring to paragraph 662 of the final document of the Baku summit of the NAM member states reiterated their support for the territorial integrity and sovereignty of the Republic of Azerbaijan within its internationally recognized borders, as well as for the settlement of the Armenian-Azerbaijani conflict on the basis of UN Security Council resolutions 822, 853, 874, 884.
On May 4, 2020, at the initiative of the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan and the current OSCE Chairman, Mr. Ilham Aliyev, a video conference of the contact group of the Non-Aligned Movement member countries on combating the COVID-19 pandemic was organized on the topic “we are together against COVID-19” in the format of a summit. The meeting was attended by 25 Heads of State and Government of the NAM membet states, 1 Vice President, 1 Deputy Prime Minister and 11 ministers.
As a result of the meeting, a declaration was adopted by the member states of the Nam and a Working Group on combating the COVID-19 pandemic was established. The group was instructed to develop a single database that will reflect the basic medical, social and humanitarian needs of the member states of the NAM in the fight against the pandemic.
In continuation of the summit meeting of the NAM contact group on May 4, 2020, the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan, Mr.Ilham Aliyev, as Chairman of the Non-Aligned Movement, took the initiative to convene a special session of the UN General Assembly dedicated to combating COVID-19, and the with the support of the majority of UN Member States, the UN Secretary-General announced the convening of this session on July 10,2020 years. As a result, on December 2020, 3-4, a high-level segment of the special session of the UN General Assembly on the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic was organized, and in the opening part of the event, President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Mr. Ilham Aliyev acted as the chairman of the Non-Aligned Movement and the initiator of this special session. During the general discussions of the special session, 37 heads of state and 40 governments, 67 ministers spoke and thanked Azerbaijan and the country’s leadership for initiating the session.
Due to the fact that the meeting of the Ministers of Foreign Affairs of the CSTO member states held on October 9, 2020 within the framework of the regular session of the UN General Assembly in the format of a videoconference coincided with the next aggression of Armenia against our country, that is, with the 44-day period of the Patriotic War, the item “armed attacked by The Republic of Armenia on the positions of the Armed Forces of the Republic of Azerbaijan and civilian settlements along the entire front”, under which a special declaration was adopted. In the special declaration, NAM member states expressed concern about the resumption of clashes between civilians in the Armenian-Azerbaijani conflict, reiterated their principled support for the settlement of the conflict on the basis of UN Security Council resolutions, and emphasized their support for the independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity of Azerbaijan. In the declaration, member states expressed their solidarity with the Republic of Azerbaijan on the basis of the principled position of the movement.
Also, on October 19, 2020, in order to discuss the situation in the Armenian-Azerbaijani conflict, closed consultations of the UN Security Council were held, a draft statement of the chairman of the UN Security Council on the issues was submitted for discussion, however, as a result of preliminary work and negotiations of the Azerbaijani side with the permanent member states of the NAM, the adoption of this draft statement contradicting the position of our of the country and does the reflect references to the UN Security Council resolutions on the conflict.
A number of ministerial events were also held during the presidency of Azerbaijan in the NAM. Due to the restrictions arising from the pandemic conditions, these events took place in a virtual format. So, on May 20, 2020 and May 24, 2021, meetings of the ministers of health of the member states of the NAM were held, on October 9, 2020 (as part of the next session of the UN General Assembly), a meeting of the foreign ministers of the NAM States and on June 4, 2021, meetings of the Labor ministers of the Member States.
During the presidency of our country in the NAM, special attention was paid to the sphere of work with young people. Thus, on the initiative and organization of Azerbaijan, on April 16-18 at the national level and on March 1-5, 2021 at the international level, the NAM model simulation training was held. 4 young people from 39 continents representing 60 member states participated in the Simulation Training organized at the international level.
On March 23,2021, within the framework of the 46th session of the UN Human Rights Council, on the initiative of Azerbaijan as the chairman of the Non-Aligned Movement, a resolution entitled “ensuring equal, reasonable cost, timely and universal accessibility to vaccines against COVID-19” was adopted. The resolution was co-authored by a total of 133 states, which is a very high indicator for the resolutions adopted by the UN Human Rights Council.
On November 18,2021, within the framework of the 76th session of the Un General Assembly, at the Third Committee of the Assembly as chairman of the Non-Aligned Movement, a resolution “ensuring equal, reasonable cost, timely and universal access to vaccines against COVID-19” was adopted by the UN member states.
On October 4-5, 2021, on the initiative of the Azerbaijan chairmanship of the Non-Aligned Movement, a virtual founding meeting of the NAM Youth Network was held with the participation of more than 100 young people representing the Non-Aligned Movement member states. As a result of the 2-day founding meeting, a letter of recommendations was prepared by members of the Youth Network and presented to senior government officials of the member states of the movement who participated in the anniversary event dedicated to the 60th anniversary of the Non-aligned Movement held in Belgrade on October 11-12,2021.
On November 26,2021, the founding meeting of the network of parliamentarians of the Non-Aligned Movement was held on the initiative of the Azerbaijan chairmanship of the Non-Aligned Movement. During the XVIII summit of the Non-Aligned Movement held in Baku, the heads of state and government of the member states decided to deepen the relations between the parliaments of the member states of the NAM, taking into account the constructive role of parliamentarians in the implementation of the principles, ideas and goals of the movement.
On October 11-12, 2021, a high-level anniversary event was held in Belgrade on the occasion of the 60th anniversary of the founding of the Non-Aligned Movement. More than 100 delegations, including 6 heads of state or government, NAM member and observer states, more than 50 foreign ministers of the states invited as special guests, the heads of international organizations, including the chairman of the Un General Assembly and the Secretary General of the Cooperation Council of Turkic-speaking states, were attended by the UN Secretary General, the Un Secretary-General addressed a video-appeal.
On September 21,2022, a ministerial meeting of the Non-Aligned Movement was held in New York as part of the high-level week of the 77th session of the UN General Assembly.
The meeting, chaired by the minister of foreign affairs of the Republic of Azerbaijan Jeyhun Bayramov, was attended by about 50 foreign ministers of the Non-Aligned Movement member states, as well as deputy ministers and permanent representatives of the UN.
Minister Jeyhun Bayramov, who made a statement at the meeting dedicated to the global situation in the post-pandemic period and the tasks of the Non-Aligned Movement, informed the Non-Aligned Movement about the work done under the chairmanship of Azerbaijan, initiatives and future plans.
The historical significance of the summit of Non-Aligned Movement Contact Group on pandemic on the initiative of the president of the Republic of Azerbaijan, the parliamentary network of the Non-Aligned Movement established in Madrid, as well as the establishment of the youth organization was brought to the attention. It was noted that the logo and flag of the Youth Organization of the movement were approved with the Shusha chord.