Azerbaijan’s Chairmanship of the Non-Aligned Movement
The foundation stone of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) was laid at the time of a collapse of the colonial system, a struggle for independence of the peoples of Africa, Asia, Latin America and other regions of the world, and at the very height of the Cold War. Throughout its existence, NAM has played an important part in maintaining peace and security around the world.
The Asian-African Conference held in Bandung in 1955 was one of the first steps on the way of establishing the Non-Aligned Movement. The historic Bandung Principles announced at the conference were comprised of a total of 10 principles, including respect for the territorial integrity and sovereignty of all nations, non-interference in the internal affairs of another country, and promotion of mutual interests and cooperation. These principles form the ideological basis of NAM. In 1961, the Non-Aligned Movement was established at the first Summit Conference in Belgrade.
The Republic of Azerbaijan became a full-fledged member of the Non-Aligned Movement in 2011. Since becoming a member of the Non-Aligned Movement, Azerbaijan has been making important contributions to the Movement's activities. For this reason, member states of the Movement unanimously agreed at the Summit of the Non-Aligned Movement in Venezuela in 2016 to elect Azerbaijan as the next chair of the organization.
Azerbaijan’s chairmanship of the Non-Aligned Movement for the 2019-2022 began at the Baku Summit held on October 25-26, 2019. Later, by a unanimous decision of member states, Azerbaijan’s chairmanship was extended for another year.
As chair of the Non-Aligned Movement, President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev has put forward a number of important initiatives for the global campaign against the COVID-19 pandemic. In particular, during Azerbaijan's chairmanship of the Non-Aligned Movement, an Online Summit of the Non-Aligned Movement at the level of leaders was held in May 2020, while a Special Session of the UN General Assembly was held in December 2020. Also, UN resolutions on fair and universal access to vaccines for all countries were adopted on Azerbaijan’s initiative during this period.
In addition, Azerbaijan has provided more than 80 countries, mostly members of the Non-Aligned Movement, with financial and humanitarian support related to COVID-19 either in a bilateral manner or through the World Health Organization.
Special importance during Azerbaijan’s chairmanship was attached to the institutional development of the Non-Aligned Movement. On the initiative of Azerbaijan, the Non-Aligned Movement Parliamentary Network was established in 2021, the Non-Aligned Movement Youth Organization was established in 2022, and the idea of establishing the Women's Platform of the Non-Aligned Movement in 2023 was supported by member states.
President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev said in this regard: “By taking these steps towards institutional sustainability, we will definitely leave a successful legacy to our successors in the capacity of chair.”
During Azerbaijan’s chairmanship, the summit and other important events of the Non-Aligned Movement were held in the country. One of them was the summit of the Non-Aligned Movement dedicated to post-pandemic recovery held in Baku in March 2023.
During the summit, President Ilham Aliyev announced two global calls for supporting the post-pandemic recovery in Africa and small developing island states, as Azerbaijan allocated one million dollars for both calls as the first donor.
Thus, as President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev noted, “During its chairmanship of the Non-Aligned Movement, Azerbaijan resolutely safeguarded justice, international law and the legal interests of member countries based on the Bandung principles”.
The movement's international prestige and influence were bolstered during Azerbaijan's chairmanship.
In January 2024, chairmanship of the Non-Aligned Movement will be transferred to Uganda. As a member of the Chairmanship Troika of this prestigious institution, Azerbaijan will continue to closely participate in its activities and successes.