On behalf of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, State Minister for Foreign Affairs Md. Shahriar Alam, MP represented Bangladesh at the 17th Summit of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) held at the Margarita Island of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela on 17-18 September 2016. The Summit was attended by over one hundred Member States of the NAM, Observers of NAM and the International Organizations, while a number of Member States were represented at the Heads of State and Government level. Mr. Nicolás Maduro Moros, President of Venezuela assumed the Chairmanship of the 17th NAM Summit from Iran, the immediate past Chair of NAM.
During his statement, Shahriar Alam recalled the Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman who led independent Bangladesh for the first time to join the Non-Aligned Movement in the Algiers Summit in 1973. Inspired by this legacy Bangladesh firmly believes in the continued relevance of NAM in the ever changing global realities, which, 55 years back, began its ideological journey with a firm commitment to the Bandung principles.
The State Minister informed the Member States about Bangladesh’s continuous efforts in strengthening democracy and justice by empowering people, especially women, and ensuring sustained growth and human development under the able leadership of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina. He reiterated the ‘zero tolerance’ stance of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina against terrorism and violent extremism and there solute actions taken by the Government of Bangladesh to degrade homegrown terrorists and to deny sanctuary to any regional or international terrorist operatives. He also apprised the Summit of Bangladesh’s contribution to the global peace and security as one of the top peacekeeper contributing countries.
The State Minister called upon the NAM to strengthen global governance of migration for ensuring adequate, safe, regular and orderly migration; to place climate change in its priority list; to expand South-South cooperation in order to help realize its potentials as complementary to North-South and Triangular Cooperation; to continue to remain active in setting the agenda for global peace and addressing existing or emerging security threats including to win the battle against terrorists and violent extremists.
During the 17th Summit, under the theme ‘Peace, Sovereignty and Solidarity for Development’, NAM Leaders adopted a Declaration with an aim to make joint efforts to achieve 21-points objectives which includes strengthening international peace and security, promotion and protection of human rights, combating terrorism, full implementation of 2030 Agenda for sustainable development, promotion of education, science and technology, especially, transfer of technology from the developed countries, safeguarding the rights of the migrants and strengthening south-south cooperation. During their Statements, the NAM Member States also emphasized on these issues. The President of Venezuela and the current NAM Chair stressed on, among others, strengthening economic ties and called for establishing ‘South-South Bank’.