Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has called for a strong and effective Non-Aligned Movement (Nam), saying the 120-member alliance today needs to be a united, strong and effective body to ensure sustainable global peace and security.
“The founding fathers of Nam envisaged a world order based on mutual respect, sovereign equality, justice and the rule of law. Now Nam needs to work together to realise the total commitment of our leaders to its principles,” she said yesterday while addressing the main plenary of the 16th Nam Summit at OIC Convention Centre in Tehran.
Nam leaders need to work with a reformed UN and other financial institutions for fair, democratic and balanced decisions at different levels of the world bodies, she noted.
Nam needs to focus on justice in all spheres within and among its member states as injustice is the basic cause of global conflicts. Only justice can ensure peace and development, and “it can be achieved only through democracy and people’s empowerment”, she said.
Calling upon Nam leaders to work with a reformed UN, she said in the sixties, Nam’s activities had centred on decolonisation and independence of nations. “But today, emphasis is on democracy, justice, freedom, human rights and climatic disorder.”
“So, Nam needs to work with a reformed United Nations and international financial institutions on these vital issues,” she noted.
The premier said Bangladesh stood firm on Nam’s demand for a sovereign, viable Palestine with Al-Quds Al Sharif as its capital, living in peace with its neighbours.
Calling for resolving the Palestine and other similar burning issues through justice and democratic and socio-economic rights, she said blatant injustice, murder, torture and humiliation were being perpetuated by Israel on the Palestinian people.
She also condemned Israel for preventing the five-member Nam Committee on Palestine from holding a scheduled ministerial meeting in Ramallah this month, and said it was a violation of international law by Israel.
Hasina warmly congratulated Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad on his assumption of the chair for the 16th Summit of the Non-Aligned Movement. She also thanked Egypt for its leadership as past chair of this movement.
She called upon Nam to work jointly for a global agreement on limiting greenhouse gas emissions, the principle of common and differentiated responsibilities, climate funding, among other things, for adaptation and mitigation, transfer of green technologies.
She said though Bangladesh had achieved near self-sufficiency in food, despite a growing population and climate change challenges, reports of drought, food shortage and rising food prices “elsewhere has been very disturbing”.
She said migration with development was one of the largest inter-state economic activities of this century. “The majority of the world’s labour migrants are from the Nam countries and their remittances alleviate poverty and contribute to development in both the sending and the receiving states.”
The prime minister said though there was a relatively free flow of capital, there was no free flow of labour. So, Nam must raise a strong voice for the implementation of the Mode IV of the Gats and adopt initiatives for safe migration and protection of the rights of migrants, especially women and children.
Hasina said her government was making relentless efforts for strengthening democracy and justice in Bangladesh through eradicating poverty, hunger, inequality, deprivation and ensuring sustained growth, human development, and rooting out terrorism.
To achieve the global goal, she said, Bangladesh had placed a “People’s Empowerment and Development” model before the last UN General Assembly. The model might be an important pillar for the 120-nation Nam’s new vision, she hoped.
“I believe the model can deliver justice, equality, strengthen democracy leading to development, progress, political stability and sustainable peace, within nations, and all across the world,” she added.
Reiterating Bangladesh’s zero tolerance to terrorism, Hasina said: “We support Nam’s position against terrorism and pledge to extend all cooperation to eliminate it.” In this regard, she mentioned the incident of August 15, 1975, and attempt on her life in 2004 and said usurpation of state power through terrorism should be eliminated.
Hasina highlighted her government’s striving to establish affinity and connectivity with neighbouring countries to ensure sustained prosperity, and said connectivity would mean greater trade and economic cooperation benefiting all and leading to a prosperous and a stable region.