Republic of Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe held discussions with Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei in the Islamic Republic of Iran during the 16th Non-Aligned Movement Summit on August 30, 2012. Mugabe urged NAM leaders to challenge western militarism., a photo by Pan-African News Wire File Photos on Flickr.
Challenge Western military aggression, Nam urged
Friday, 31 August 2012 03:52
Hebert Zharare in TEHRAN, Iran
NON-Aligned Movement member-states should remain united and challenge Western aggression when atta-cked militarily, President Mugabe has said.
Addressing journalists on arrival at Mehrabad Airport on Wednesday, the Head of State and Government and Commander-in-Chief of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces said it was high time Nam countries repelled military attacks militarily.
“Nam members must remain united, stand together and support each other at UN. They must resolve to help each other as much as they can, in a revolutionary way.
“Where imperialists are attacking militarily, NAM members must not stand and say . . . aah we are founded on the basis of peace.
“When we are attacked, we must not remain humble and modest and inactive. No. If we are attacked we must be able to resist the aggression and be able to put up the fight in defence of our sovereignty,” he said.
The President said all countries’ sovereignty was paramount as stipulated by the UN Charter.
He said all countries in the world were supposed to respect that position.
All nations, the President said, were supposed to be accorded the right to empower their people economically and no one was supposed to stop such moves.
Commenting on the ongoing summit, President Mugabe said Nam was not supposed to deviate from its founding principles of creating international peace, preventing wars and aggression.
He said the summit was critical to Africa as it was coming against the backdrop of Western aggression on some African countries.
Recent cases include the attack on Libya and the subsequent brutal murder of Colonel Muammar Gaddafi and Western-sponsored unrests in Egypt and Tunisia.
“We have heard aggressive and imperialist countries wanting to undermine our political systems.
“Zimbabwe was also under threat for acquiring land from the former British colonial masters,” he said.
President Mugabe said countries were supposed to respect the United Nations Charter, adding that Britain and her allies were supposed to be stopped from interfering in the affairs of other countries.
“We have recently seen aggression in some North African countries and that’s not promotion of peace.
“It is actually attempts by the imperialists to reverse not only the sovereignty of States to go about their business of carrying out economic transformation within their countries, but also to undermine the sovereignty of those countries so that the West exploits resources of these poor and weak nations like what happened in Iraq,” he said.
World leaders said Nam should be strengthened to plays its role in international relations as the United State and its allies have turned the UN into a tool to suppress smaller countries.
They accused the Western powers of converting the UN Security Council and other General Assembly structures into economic and political oppression avenues.
Speaking during the official opening of the Nam Summit yesterday, the majority of the leaders were unanimous that the UN institutions were now irrelevant.
Opening the summit yesterday, Iranian leader Dr Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said it was high time NAM had a secretariat that helps in identifying critical areas that need co-operation among members.
"We can start a secretariat that economically empowers people, have bilateral co-operation, build peace and help reform the UN structures. Iran has a lot of experience in facing challenges imposed by different world powers," he sad.
Dr Ahmadinejad said organisations such as the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank had been used to kill economies of smaller nations through pressures such as inflation and debt.
He said the UN Security Council for the past 65 years has been used illegitimately to prop up countries such as Israel that support US foreign policy.
He said it has also been used to thwart some countries such as Afghanistan, Palestine and Syria among others for resenting American policies.
In Africa, Zimbabwe has been slapped with economic sanctions, while in Egypt, Libya and Tunisia some insurgents were sponsored to topple sitting governments.
"Now there is nowhere to turn to… the Security Council has usurped the role of the General Assembly. Former colonisers and slave drivers of the past are dominating in world economics.
‘‘They are now a super race. They create disputes and wars in our regions on religious and ethnicity grounds to create the opportunity to sell weapons and to plunder our resources," he said.
President Ahmadinejad, who assumed the NAM presidency yesterday, said he wanted to ensure resolution of conflicts peacefully, call for sustainable development, diversification of NAM and call for the recognition of all countries’ sovereignty.
He said NAM members constituted two thirds of UN members and there was a need for them to call for the creation of a New World Order.
“They use wars to create wealth for themselves. Our people are nothing other than slaves to a small group of people - capitalists who always think about themselves.
“We as NAM can create major changes, turn tables and create a new world that is fair, where people will always have mutual understanding. Slavery and plundering is a result of too much love for money,” he said.
He said there was need for leaders to guard against corruption, protect culture and empower women and the youths.
Speaking at the same occasion, the Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei concurred with President Ahmadinejad that it was time the world stopped the West’s monopoly of determining other countries’ future.
He described the UN as an undemocratic institution in need of immediate reforms.
“People are being tortured without being given right to an attorney. The US now labels everyone as rogue.
“The US is the one that has the highest number of nuclear stock piles while they want others to destroy nuclear projects that benefit many people… This should be rejected.”
UN secretary general Mr Ban Ki Moon called on NAM members to work together.
Mr Ban, who insisted on coming to attend the NAM Summit against the wishes of Western countries, said the movement provided about four fifth of the world’s peacekeeping forces.
He called on Africa to speedily solve the crisis in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
However, Mr Ban differed with the Iranian leadership on the way forward in their nuclear projects.
“On the nuclear proliferation, like what I have said before, Iran should take measures that make it comply with the UN Security Council resolution that does not conflict with others,” he said.
Meanwhile, President Mugabe met Dr Ahmadinejad and congratulated him for being the new NAM President.
The presidency rotates among member states.
Iran takes over from Egypt.
The summit continues today.