TODAY.AZ / Politics

Azerbaijan's NAM Chairmanship: call for sustainable development and peace

07 March 2023 [14:55] - TODAY.AZ

By MP Mazahir Afandiyev

World states, particularly developed states that can ensure their economic stability and participate in global projects, being the main subjects of the new order that is being formed, are aiming once more at reviewing the directions of action in all fields, determining their place, and securing their interests. This is happening against the backdrop of the transformation of this new era in which the fourth industrial revolution is taking place.

A new political architecture is being significantly hampered by the Russian-Ukrainian war, which has been going on for more than a year and has had a fundamental impact on the system of international relations.

Issues related to the security of the people living in the Middle Eastern states, the policy of the European Union aimed at expanding to the east, the conflict between the United States of America and China for economic dominance, as well as the conflict centers awaiting resolution in different continents of our planet, are great threats to the peace of the world of tomorrow. These threats require international peace institutions, including specialized international think tanks, as well as influential political leaders of the world's countries, to urgently gather together and discuss ensuring the stability of the global peace system.

The Republic of Azerbaijan, which has a 30-year modern political history, demonstrates its sensitivity to contemporary global challenges and contributes to the realization of a lasting peace in the world by safeguarding its independence and sovereignty and considering the interests of the peoples residing in its historical lands.

The Non-Aligned Movement, founded in 1961, is the second-largest international institution after the UN General Assembly, uniting 120 countries, whose goal is to defend justice and international law. Today, it has been running smoothly for more than three years under Azerbaijani leadership, and it actively engages in setting up debates of issues of global importance that the rest of the world finds troubling.

The fact that the Summit-level Meeting of the Non-Aligned Movement Contact Group in response to COVID-19 was held in Baku on March 2, 2023, in this challenging geopolitical environment, during a time of conflict of interest, and was specifically focused on the effects of the pandemic and the creation of a roadmap for the post-COVID era, is related to the position of the wise leader of Azerbaijan, Ilham Aliyev, in international politics.

Generally speaking, the Non-Aligned Movement was one of the first international organizations to mobilize actions against COVID-19 as soon as the pandemic was announced. The fact that the heads of state and government from 70 different nations, as well as high-ranking officials from several other nations, attended this summit shows faith in the President's resolve and humanity.

The establishment of a Contact Group Contact Group in response to COVID-19 at the initiative of our state in 2020 and its summit meeting in the format of a video conference, the coordination of international humanitarian aid arising from internal discussions and the challenges of the pandemic, and Azerbaijan's support for the powerless states in the face of the coronavirus crisis increased the importance and influence of the Non-Aligned Movement on the global stage.

In the last three years, during the chairmanship of the Non-Aligned Movement of Azerbaijan, the institution has had great achievements, especially in laying the foundation of the organizational process. As Mr. President noted in the excellently organized summit-level meeting, "Our goal is to create institutional continuity and leave a successful legacy to the members who will take over the presidency after Azerbaijan."

Today, the governments of the UN member states are working to achieve the 17 Sustainable Development Goals reflected in the "2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development," adopted unanimously in 2015. The implementation of this global document is one of the main activities of the member states of the Non-Aligned Movement.

Azerbaijan, a full member of the UN family, has become an exemplary state in the international arena by performing activities based on the UN Charter. Azerbaijan also contributes to the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals document, which is of great importance for the world. Almost in all his speeches, President Ilham Aliyev drew attention to the 2030 Agenda and repeatedly emphasized that those 17 goals are also a priority for Azerbaijan. It should be noted that our country is the only country that has prepared 3 Voluntary National Reviews on Sustainable Development Goals since 2016.

In his speech at the Summit, Mr. President touched on the important issue encountered in practice and for the first time proposed to the event participants to add the actual problem as the 18th goal to complete the principle of "Leaving No One Behind" in the philosophy of this universal document.

After the Second Karabakh-Patriotic War, which lasted 44 days, Azerbaijan exposed new realities in the region, and it is now expertly carrying out restoration and building tasks independently in order to realize the Great Return in the areas it freed from occupation. Azerbaijan is demining the areas that have been liberated from occupation in order to enable the swift and effective completion of these projects, the return of former internally displaced people, and individuals who were forcibly removed from their homes.

Azerbaijan proposed making demining the 18th Sustainable Development Goal in order to increase the movement's visibility on a global scale while also considering the fact that many of the Non-Aligned Movement's member nations are among those most contaminated by landmines and unexploded ordnance.This specific national sustainable development goal fully embraces the "Leaving No One Behind" principle while accelerating the return of displaced people to their homelands.

This suggestion from the president of Azerbaijan will once more assist in resolving current issues, considering the interests of all peoples worldwide, and setting up a lasting peace system

* Mazahir Afandiyev is the member of the Milli Majlis of the Republic of Azerbaijan


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