Non-Aligned Movement Summit
Taking a stand against US imperialism
by Stephen Lendman
The Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) web site says it has 115 members "representing the interests and priorities of developing countries."
Wikipedia calls NAM a 120 member body with 21 observer countries. Member states include India, Egypt, Venezuela, and Indonesia. Observer ones include China, Russia, and Brazil.
NAM originated from the 1955 Asia-Africa Conference. Twenty-nine states participated. Mostly former African and Asian colonies comprised them. They convened to discuss common concerns, development plans, and international relations.
Issues addressed included major power pressures, maintaining independence, and opposing neocolonialism, especially "western domination."
In 1961, 25 countries participated in the first Belgrade, Yugoslavia summit. Concerns then focused on an accelerating Cold War arms race.
Yugoslavia's Josip Broz Tito was its first secretary-general, Egypt's Gamal Abdel Nasser its second. Egypt's Mohamed Morsi serves as current secretary-general.
Earlier ones included Fidel and Raul Castro, Nelson Mandela, Zambia's Kenneth Kaunda, Zimbabwe's Robert Mugabe, and South Africa's Thabo Mbeki.
Havana hosted the 1979 summit. Fidel Castro enunciated the Havana Declaration of 1979, saying:
It's purpose is to ensure "the national independence, sovereignty, territorial integrity, and security of non-aligned countries (in their) struggle against imperialism, colonialism, neocolonialism, racism, and all forms of foreign aggression, occupation, domination, interference or hegemony as well as as against great power and bloc politic."
Membership criteria were adopted. They included:
(1) Independent policies based on "the coexistence of States with different political and social systems" and non-alignment.
(2) Support for "Movements for National Independence."
(3) Countries belonging to "multilateral military alliance(s)" are excluded.