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Vietnam’s active contribution to maintain the orientation of the Non-Aligned Movement
17/10/2016 18:4' Send Print
Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro (right) during the welcome ceremony, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Pham Binh Minh (left) at the opening of the 17th Summit of the Non-Aligned Movement. Photo: VNA

“Peace, Sovereignty and Solidarity for Development”

The Non-Aligned Movement came into being in 1961 in the context of the Cold War and confrontation between the two blocs. The movement has gathered countries which newly gained independence, commonly called Third World countries, with the aim of creating a broad rally of forces against the interference of imperialist countries, preserve peace, independence, coexistence and development, demonstrating its progressiveness.

The movement has been operational based on the 10 principles adopted by the Asia-Africa Bandung Conference in 1955, including respecting for sovereignty, territorial integrity, non-interference in countries’ internal affairs, non-use of force, resolving disputes by peaceful means in conformity with the UN Charter. Over the past 55 years of development, from the original 25 member states, the movement has grown to 120 members, mostly developing countries from Asia, Europe, Africa and Latin America, accounting for nearly two thirds of the total members of the United Nations and 55% of the world population.

This Summit was be held in Venezuela, with the participation of 104 out of the 120 member countries, including 22 Heads of State and Prime Ministers, 11 Vice Presidents and Deputy Prime Ministers. With the theme “Peace, Sovereignty and Solidarity for Development,” countries has reaffirmed the basic values and goals of the Movement since its establishment, consideration them as the basis for the Movement to strengthen solidarity and enhance coordinated action in respond to the current challenges such as war, conflict, interference, subversion, protection of sovereignty, anti-terrorism, the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals and the Paris Agreement on Climate Change.

The conference adopted a final document, reaffirming the determination to defend the fundamental principles of the Movement, pointing to the common stance of the Non-Aligned Movement on global issues, promoting multilateralism, the role of international law, including the basic principles of respect for sovereignty, non-interference in other countries’ internal affairs, peaceful settlement of disputes, pushing for disarmament, particularly nuclear weapons, determination to fight terrorism, accelerating the reform of the United Nations in line with the current interests of the developing countries, cooperating to respond to economic and financial crisis, and stressing the need for ODA by developing countries.

In addition, the document also demands that the implementation of the Paris Agreement on Climate Change must follow the principle of equity and shared responsibility though there are differences. It calls on developed countries to implement specific steps to mobilize US$100 billion before 2020, contributing to respond to climate change and affirmed the importance of the overall management and sustainable use of water resources.

Concerning regional issues, the document acknowledges the new developments in Southeast Asia, welcomed the establishment of the ASEAN Community, and ASEAN efforts to enhance the central role of ASEAN in regional structures , and strengthen relations with the United Nations.

Regarding the East Sea issue, the document calls for the settlement of all disputes on sovereignty and territory by peaceful means, not to use or threaten to use force, exercise of restraint, support for the principles of the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea (DOC), the 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), commitment to ensure freedom of navigation and aviation in accordance with the principles of international law. It also urges ASEAN and China to make efforts to implement the DOC to early reach the Code of Conduct of Parties in the East Sea (COC).

Maintain the orientation of the Movement in the current international context

Vietnam became a full member of the Movement since 1976 and has positively participated in the activities of the movement. Vietnam is among the 33 countries with the highest participation level. This shows Vietnam’s respect for the Movement, readiness to contribute actively to the success of the Conference, as well as its support for and solidarity with the host country Venezuela and Vietnam's traditional friends in Latin America.

The Vietnamese delegation made a positive and concrete contribution to the Summit, as well as meetings at Ministerial and senior officials (SOM) levels. Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Pham Binh Minh made an important speech at the meeting. With the message “Strengthening solidarity on the basis of common objectives and principles for peace, sovereignty and sustainable development,” Deputy Prime Minister Pham Binh Minh said for past 55 years of development, the Non-Aligned Movement has made many contributions to the struggle for peace, national independence, against the war and for development. The Deputy Prime Minister pointed out that the movement can only be most powerful only when all the member states are united, act with one voice on the basis of common principles and goals. The Deputy Prime Minister said there have been complex developments in the international and regional situation, including current major challenges to peace, security, international terrorism, climate change, and environmental degradation in the world that no country can solve alone. Besides there are other constraints such as lack of respect for international law, intervention, pressure and imposition of the values, viewpoints and selfish interests of the big countries, injustice in trade and finance, risk of lagging behind and unilateralism.

The Deputy Prime Minister suggested the Movement to focus on strengthening the unity, uphold the founding principles, including the principle of peaceful settlement of disputes in line with international law, implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Paris Agreement on Climate Change with the principle of “shared responsibility with differences,” to promote South-South, tripartite, inter-regional, and subregional cooperation, and ensure that mechanisms of global governance must be more democratic, equal with substantive participation, of the countries of the Non-Aligned Movement. Deputy Prime Minister Pham Binh Minh highly valued efforts to build the ASEAN Community, especially in the promotion of peace, security, stability, development and in coping with complex challenges in the region, including the East Sea issue.

Vietnam’s contribution to the Summit has been welcomed and highly appreciated by the host country and the Member States. They are:

Vietnam has actively contributed to maintain the orientation of the Movement in the context of the current complex international situation, especially when external countries are attempting to interfere and divide the Movement and there have been signs of staying aloof from the basic principle in the movement. Vietnam joined the ASEAN countries to promote unity, maintain the basic principles of the Movement, particularly non-interference in internal affairs, no pressure, settlement of disputes by peaceful means in accordance with international law, respect and mutual response between the member states, and external countries should respect the opinion of other countries in regions about the problems of the regions. This is a prerequisite for Movement to keep its identity and continue to grow.

Together with many countries, Vietnam emphasized the need to prioritize the handling of major and urgent issues of the Movement and of humanity, such as protecting the sovereignty, independence, sustainable development, climate change response to meet the common interests of the member states.

The Vietnamese delegation actively supported, and constructively exchanged views with the Chair country to remove obstacles and differences arising during the Summit on the basis of the principles of the Movement, contributing to the success of the Summit.

On the sidelines of the Summit, Deputy Prime Minister Pham Binh Minh had a series of bilateral meetings with Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro, Iraqi Foreign Minister Ibrahim Al-Shaiker Al-Jafari, Cuban President, El Salvador President, Haiti Prime Minister, Foreign Ministers of Venezuela and Burundi to strengthen bilateral relations, facilitate investment projects in oil and gas and telecommunications in Vietnam in some countries, and deployment cooperation mechanisms. Leaders of these countries expressed their admiration for the history and achievements during the 30 years of renovation of Vietnam, and committed to creating more favorable conditions, and remove difficulties for Vietnamese businesses’ investment.

Vietnam has demonstrated its constructive, proactive and positive role, thereby improving the image and reputation of Vietnam towards the Movement and international friends.

Synthesized by Phuong Tra