Statement by His Excellency Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Belarus Mr. Sergei N. Martynov at the anniversary ministerial meeting of Non-Aligned Movement in Belgrade
Ladies and Gentlemen,
First of all, I would like to extend high appreciation to the Government of the Republic of Serbia for convening this meeting to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the founding of the Non-Aligned Movement.
Indeed, it was here in the beautiful Belgrade, half a century ago, when a generation of giants – Tito, Sukarno, Nasser, Nehru, Nkrumah – laid down the first “bricks” to the Movement’s edifice.
At the height of Cold War confrontation, our Founding Fathers offered a vision of a world free of domination, colonialism, apartheid and oppression. This vision, perhaps deemed at its promulgation by many in the world as a departure from realism, in the long run presented a viable alternative to the politics predicated on power and egoism.
Throughout the past five decades the Non-aligned Movement has consistently been in the forefront of global efforts at promoting multilateralism. We, as a Movement, have helped diffuse superpower tensions and thus, proved instrumental in democratizing world politics. The Movement has invariably stood for the interests of developing countries in the context of global development.
The success of our vision is both the greatest achievement of the Non-aligned Movement and our contribution to the painstaking formation of the new world – to bear in mind that the might of the right always triumphs over the right of the might.
Thus, we, the Non-aligned states, have the real cause today to be truly proud of our Movement’s historical record and its current scale.
Belarus is honored to be able to take a share in this, although we are rather “adolescents” in the Non-aligned Movement. After acquiring independence in 1991 we began cultivating closer ties with developing countries and in 1998 at the XII Summit in Durban became a fully-fledged member of NAM.
It was our deliberate choice. In opting for such a path Belarus took inspiration from another European NAM Member State, the former Yugoslavia, which had been a forceful engine of the Movement throughout its first decades.
Indeed, as PresidentTito 50 years ago advocated the need to work against the lines dividing Europe, so did the President of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko at the turn of the millennium see a similar imperative to fight the new separating lines, oppose military blocks expansion, and confront the policies of dictate.
It is extremely gratifying that of the initial 25 Member Nations the Non-aligned Movement in half a century came to grow to an impressive 120 Member gathering. It is a testimony to the strength of our vision. It is expression of firm belief in our huge potential.
Today, at our 50-year anniversary we try to discern the role and place of the Movement far away into the future. Indeed, it was the main task of the XVI Ministerial conference of NAM, held in Bali, Indonesia last May. The conference’s Outcome Document titled “A Shared Vision for the Next 50 Years” offered a very ambitious programme of action.
With this in mind, Belarus would like to put a particular emphasis on three key points, which, in our opinion, may turn out to be instrumental in implementing the Bali’s long-term vision.
First, it is about our unity and solidarity. It goes without saying that we are only as strong as we all speak with one voice. It is our firm belief that the Purposes and Principles, inaugurated yet in 1955 in Bandung, provide the foundation on which to build our unity and solidarity.
Second, it is about our co-operation with other major stakeholders in the world. The current world is no longer one dominated by the bipolar rivalry, but rather one characterized by multiple international “players”, uneven globalization, as well as ever-rising transnational threats. In this complex and interconnected world the Non-Aligned movement would be better served if it were to commence active interaction as a Movement with the existing and emerging power centers and other global stakeholders.
Finally, it is about our approaches to addressing transnational problems. We think that in the world of multiple threats and multiple stakeholders there is no better option for co-operation other than the tool of global partnerships that bring together states, international organizations, civil society and private sector in a common effort against specific transnational challenges. Therefore, Belarus would like to urge the Non-aligned Movement, as well as its individual members to establish and effectively implement global partnerships.
For half a century NAM has held the high moral ground in world politics. Let us hope that through our action the Movement will continue to bear that most dignified of all claims.