Statement by Elmar Mammadyarov, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Azerbaijan, at the 50th Anniversary Meeting of the Non-Aligned Movement

Statement by Elmar Mammadyarov, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Azerbaijan, at the 50th Anniversary Meeting of the Non-Aligned Movement

Belgrade, September 6, 2011

Mr. Chairman,

Ladies and gentlemen,

At the outset, I would like to express my appreciation to the Government of Serbia for the warm reception and wonderful hospitality extended to me and my delegation since our arrival in this wonderful city of Belgrade, one of the birthplaces of the Movement of non-aligned states.

This year we celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the establishment of the NAM, and it remains as relevant today as it was when it was founded. The end of the Cold War has, in no way, diminished the unique role of the NAM as a mechanism for the political coordination of non-aligned countries.

Having recently joined the Non-Aligned Movement as a full-fledged Member, Azerbaijan declared its adherence to and respect for the principles and purposes of the Movement.

“The Ten Bandung Principles” of the Non-Aligned Movement adopted in 1955, which among other guiding rules to build better and peaceful world, calls for respect for the sovereignty, territorial integrity and inviolability of borders of all nations and refraining from acts or threats of aggression or the use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any country.

It is regrettable to say that Azerbaijan is still suffering from the aggression of the neighboring Armenia, with almost 20% of our land still under the occupation and around 1 million refugees and IDP’s are ethnically cleansed from those territories. Unfortunately, despite of the four United Nations Security Council resolutions Armenia refuses to withdraw its troops from the occupied territories of Azerbaijan and hereby prevents to bring the lasting peace and stability to our region.

Azerbaijan highly appreciates the principled stand of many NAM Member States in supporting Azerbaijan’s sovereignty and territorial integrity. We count on your continued solidarity of our just position and efforts aimed at putting an end the occupation of the territories of my country.

Mr. Chairman,

The Republic of Azerbaijan reaffirms its adherence to the NAM position concerning Palestine and reiterates its long-standing solidarity with the people and leadership of Palestine. We believe that time has come to reach a breakthrough on this old and notorious issue.

Azerbaijan is determined to contribute to the realization of the development goals and objectives agreed within the United Nations’ system. It demonstrates full support and undertakes ceaseless efforts for eradication of poverty and promotion sustained economic growth, sustainable development and global prosperity for all, paying particular attention to addressing the special needs and vulnerabilities of the developing and least developed countries as well as those recovering from natural disasters. Through the last years Azerbaijan has provided extensive technical and humanitarian assistance to and contributed to the implementation of national development policies and strategies in a number of countries in need.

Desirous of contributing further to the maintenance of international peace, security, stability and prosperity, Azerbaijan has put forward its candidature for a non-permanent seat in the United Nations Security Council, for the term 2012-2013. The elections will be held during the 66th session of the United Nations General Assembly on October 13, 2011.

Year 2012 marks the 20th anniversary of Azerbaijan’s membership to the United Nations, though, unlike other candidates from the Group of Eastern European States, it has never had an opportunity to be a member of the Security Council.

Among the candidates from our regional group, Azerbaijan is the only country which is a full-fledged member of the Non-Aligned Movement. The election of Azerbaijan to the Security Council will contribute to redressing under-representation of small developing countries and bring more balance membership in the Security Council. I would like to assure you that the Non-Aligned Movement will benefit from its strengthened presence in the Security Council provided by Azerbaijan’s membership in this authoritative UN body.

Thank you.

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