NAM called to make people’s hope into reality

HIS Royal Highness Prince Mohamed Bolkiah, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade, yesterday highlighted the need to strengthen the benefits of globalisation for the people represented by the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM).

Speaking at the 17th Ministerial Meeting of the Coordinating Bureau for the Non-Aligned Movement yesterday at the Palais des Nations in Algiers, HRH said, “We felt aligned with the hope of the people we represent and we were firmly non-aligned with a world of confrontation between the interests of major forces whether political or commercial. Unfortunately, over the past two years, there has been little opportunity to make our people feel that our words are more than just expressions of hope.”

According to HRH, the one practical thing we can point to is the progress in Palestine.

HRH greatly appreciated the continued efforts of NAM’s movement in supporting the Palestinian cause, which according to HRH, is once again highlighted by the proclamation of 2014 as the International Year of Solidarity with the Palestinian people.

In this regard, we are very pleased to join others in adopting the NAM declaration on Palestine, said HRH.

HRH said, “We are also happy that the state of Palestine has successfully obtained observer status in the United Nations.

“This represents a significant step forward and we reaffirm our support for their full membership.

“Apart from that, however, I fear that our hopes seem to have been overtaken by events, natural and man-made disasters, and political, sectarian and even tribal confrontations.

“The question I believe we face now is a simple one – Not ‘what do we say about this?’ but ‘what do we do about this?’

“We have our meetings and mechanisms but we have to bring back confidence and hope to our people in their families and communities because the alternative is tragic.

“It is already visible in one word, ‘emig-ration’.

“Too many of our people are seeking by any means in their power to get out of the non-aligned world.

“They prefer to take their chance in the aligned one, the one aligned with jobs, freedom, and a peaceful future. In other words, we have reached a new stage of globalisation.”

HRH believes the challenge NAM faces as a movement right now is how to avoid that fate by deeds rather than words.

“This, I believe, calls on us as members of this association and our guests from all over the world to share the full benefits of globalisation as friends and, in the words of a well-known Algerian saying, ‘a true friend is someone who shares your happiness and your pains’,” said HRH, adding that it is hoped that the major powers of the modern world, political and commercial, can put the fears and animosities of the 20th Century firmly behind them and build this new century in the interests of the ordinary people NAM represents.

HRH said in terms of the two words used to describe NAM here, ‘non-aligned’ and ‘movement’, the modern world demands that we place all our emphasis on the second – ‘movement’ for our people towards renewed hope, towards happiness, towards prosperity and towards peace obtained solely through dialogue, negotiation and diplomacy.

Earlier, on Tuesday, HRH was met at Houari Boumediene Airport Algiers, Republic of Algeria, by Director General of the Asia and Oceanic Department of the Algerian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Mohamed El Amine Derragui.

HRH on Tuesday evening attended a dinner hosted by Prime Minister Abdelmalek Sellal of the Republic of Algeria in honour of visiting ministers and heads of delegation. - Borneo Bulletin (29 May 2014)