NAM/FMM/GA58/Chair/Report
26 September 2003

 

MEETING OF THE MINISTERS OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS
OF THE NON-ALIGNED MOVEMENT AT THE 58TH SESSION
OF THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE UNITED NATIONS 

NEW YORK, 26 SEPTEMBER 2003 

* REPORT ON THE ACTIVITIES OF THE NON-ALIGNED MOVEMENT
(MARCH – SEPTEMBER 2003)

Introduction 

1.           Following the XIII NAM Summit in Kuala Lumpur, from 20 to 25 February 2003, Malaysia in its capacity as the new Chair of the Movement, has undertaken and coordinated various activities of NAM to further enhance the prestige and credibility of the Movement in the international fora.  The main activities conducted by the Chair to-date are as follows: 

Activities of the Chairman of NAM 

2.           The Prime Minister of Malaysia, in his capacity as Chairman of NAM, participated in the inaugural Enlarged Dialogue Meeting of the Annual G8 Summit, under the Presidency of France, in Evian-les-Bains, France on 2 June 2003.  The Chairman of NAM, along with a number of leaders of the developing countries, had a frank and useful exchange of views with the G8 Leaders.  He also took the opportunity to convey to the G8 leaders, in a written message to President Chirac, the positions of the Movement on International Peace and Security, International Terrorism, Disarmament, Democracy and Good Governance, Human Rights, the Special Needs of and the Critical Economic Situation in Africa, Trade and Economic Issues and Financial, Investment and Monetary Issues.  The commendable French initiative, which was the first ever to be undertaken by a presidency of the G8, afforded an opportunity for the leaders of the developing countries to put across the views of the South on issues of importance to them to the leaders of the G8 before decisions were made affecting our countries. 

3.           On the occasion of the 40th Anniversary of the Africa Day, the Chairman of NAM extended a Message to the President of South Africa, in his capacity as Chairman of the African Union, on 25 May 2003.  Aside from expressing the continued solidarity of the Movement with the countries of Africa, the Chairman of NAM, through his Message, reaffirmed the Movement’s long-standing commitment in assisting the African countries to address their various concerns and needs.  This could be achieved, inter alia, through the broadening and intensifying South-South co-operation. 

Activities of the Chairman of the Ministerial Meeting of NAM 

4.          As Chair of NAM, Malaysia initiated a Brainstorming Meeting of the Foreign Ministers of the NAM Troika, held in Paris, on 2 May 2003.  It was held pursuant to the provisions of the Kuala Lumpur Declaration on Continuing the Revitalisation of the Movement, which had called for the full and effective utilisation of all existing mechanisms and institutions, such as the Troika.  The Troika discussed issues of importance to the Movement, among others, the unilateral military actions against Iraq, the role of the United Nations in the post-War Iraq, the centrality of multilateralism in international relations, the Palestinian issue and the follow-up process of the KL Declaration on Continuing the Revitalisation of NAM.  On Iraq, the Troika Ministers exchanged views on the possible elements that could be presented to the larger NAM membership as the principled position of the Movement on the future of Iraq.  However, due to a lack of consensus, NAM was unable to pronounce its definitive position on the issue.  

5.           The Minister of Foreign Affairs of Malaysia, in his capacity as Chairman of the NAM Ministerial Meeting, participated in the 1st Ministerial Meeting of the Asian-African Sub-Regional Organisations Conference (AASROC I), jointly organised by the Governments of Indonesia and South Africa, in Bandung, from 29 to 30 July 2003.  The Minister of Foreign Affairs of Malaysia delivered a statement, on behalf of the Movement, at that Meeting  which, among others, supported Indonesia’s and South Africa’s initiative to revive and strengthen Asian-African Cooperation within the framework of South-South Cooperation, involving cooperation and collaboration between sub-regional organizations of Asia and Africa.  He said that the initiative was consistent with the Kuala Lumpur Declaration on Continuing the Revitalisation of the Non-Aligned Movement which had encouraged an expansion and expansion of cooperation through “enhanced regional and inter-regional cooperation, through concrete projects and programmes and pooling of resources …”. 

Activities of the NAM Co-ordinating Bureau in New York 

6.           Since the XIII NAM Summit, the NAM Co-ordinating Bureau in New York has held monthly meetings, and extraordinary meetings when necessary, in order to implement the decisions of the Summit, and to co-ordinate the activities of the Movement in the United Nations.  Meetings of the Bureau were also utilised to discuss topical issues and to receive reports of the NAM Working Groups.  The Chair provided regular reports of its activities at these meetings.  In addition, it also met in preparation for the annual ministerial meetings of the Non-Aligned Movement during the regular sessions of the United Nations General Assembly.  

7.           During the period under review, the Co-ordinating Bureau addressed a number of additional important issues in monthly or extraordinary meetings in New York, such as the NAM Working Group on the Revitalisation of the General Assembly, meeting between the Members of the NAM Committee on Palestine and the Members of the Quartet on the Middle East Peace Process, Special Meeting of the Bureau to listen to a briefing by the Special Representative of the Secretary General for Iraq, Special Meeting Between the Permanent Representatives of the NAM Troika and the Secretary General of the United Nations on the bombing attacks of the Headquarters of the UN Mission in Baghdad, Informal Consultation with the President of the 58th UNGA Session and others. 

8.           On the occasion of the celebration of the 40th Anniversary of Africa Day, held in New York, on 28 May 2003, the Chairman of the Co-ordinating Bureau of NAM delivered a statement on behalf of the Movement. 

NAM Co-ordination in other centres 

9.           Following the XIII NAM Summit, there has been increased coordination within NAM not only in New York, but also in Geneva and Vienna as enjoined by the Kuala Lumpur Declaration which, among others, calls for “enhancing … coordination and cooperation through regular meetings of the Co-ordinating Bureau in New York, as well as in Geneva, Vienna and Nairobi and other centres, if necessary, with the view to responding, on timely basis, to international developments affecting the Movement and its members”.  Pursuant to this, Malaysia has initiated NAM coordination in Vienna through the mechanism of a newly established Vienna NAM Chapter, dealing mainly with IAEA Safeguard issues, in addition to coordination in Geneva that deals with Disarmament, Human Rights and Labour issues.  In conjunction with the 1st Chemical Weapons Convention Review Conference, held from 28 April to 9 May 2003, at The Hague, Malaysia, as Chair of NAM, at the request of Members, also undertook the responsibility of coordinating the NAM position at that Conference. 

10.       Basically, the coordination of NAM Chair at these centres, among others, involves initiating draft resolutions, convening consultations and meetings with NAM member states to coordinate NAM position, holding consultations/negotiations with other groupings and preparing and presenting statements on behalf of the Movement. 

 

 * This Report was presented by the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Malaysia, in his capacity as Chairman of the Ministerial Meeting of NAM, at the Meeting of the Ministers of Foreign Affairs of NAM, held in New York, on 26 September 2003.