Sri Lanka has reaffirmed its commitment to the founding principles of the Non-Aligned Movement and called for the group’s collective attention to the need to address contemporary global challenges, highlighting in particular, poverty and terrorism.
Minister of Foreign Affairs Tilak Marapana made this remark while addressing the 18th Summit of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) in Baku, Azerbaijan on 26 October 2019.
While observing that poverty remains one of the greatest impediments to the achievement of the goals of the 2030 Development Agenda, Minister Marapana briefed the NAM Member States on how alleviation of poverty has been at the core of Sri Lanka’s development strategies, the country’s endeavours to address the issues of social inequality, empowerment of women, and also, numerous welfare measures aimed at assisting the underprivileged.
Referring to terrorism, which remains one of the most serious threats to international peace and security, he reiterated Sri Lanka’s unequivocal condemnation of terrorism in all its forms and manifestations and also pointed out the need to address violent extremism.
Minister Marapana emphasized the gravity of the issues of climate change and expressed hope that the 25th Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change in Chile later this year will further galvanise global action to adapt to and mitigate the impacts of this global threat.
He also underscored the relevance of NAM as the collective voice of the global South while recalling how the group has championed the values that are inherently vital in safeguarding multilateralism.
Minister Marapana also addressed the Preparatory Ministerial Meeting held prior to the Summit on Wednesday.
Sri Lanka is a co-sponsor of the Bandung conference of 1955 during which the core values of the Non-Aligned Movement, known as the Bandung Principles, were formulated. Sri Lanka is also a founding member of the Non-Aligned Movement.