February 26 , 2003

Delegates Full Of Praise For Malaysia's Hosting Of NAM

KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 26 (Bernama) -- Delegates to the 13th Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) Summit have heaped praise on Malaysia for its success in hosting the event and vowed to support the movement and improve its activities.

Leaders speaking on behalf of the four groups in NAM -- Africa, Asia, Europe, and Latin America and the Caribbean -- all congratulated the government under the leadership of Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Mahathir Mohamad and its people for a job well done.
In his concluding remarks on behalf of the African group Tuesday night, Namibian President Dr Samuel Nujoma said the outcome of the business forum would contribute to a better and deeper understanding of opportunities, such as cooperation among the member countries.
He said the KL Declaration touched on most of the key issues of interest to NAM and the challenges faced.
"We have reaffirmed the need to strengthen our South-South cooperation and NAM needs to coordinate its position in the entire international arena, especially in the area of trade and negotiations," he said.
Member countries also reaffirmed the need to promote constructive dialogues and facilitate the implementation of the declaration so as to bring about greater understanding and better cooperation between countries of the North and South, he said.
Dr Nujoma said the African group hoped that NAM would continue to play a constructive role in assisting the African Union in the latter's effort to resolve conflicts in the continent.
"We would also call on NAM to implement its development programmes for Africa through NEPAD," he said. NEPAD stands for New Partnership for Africa, a programme for development and eradicating poverty.
He said Africa would remain committed to the founding principles of NAM and support the chairmanship of NAM.
Kuwait's first Deputy Prime Minister Sheik Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah, speaking on behalf of Asia, said although the summit was organised in a very short period, it had borne fruitful results.
"The expertise of the delegates and their visions have enabled the declaration to be completed on time," he said.
Al-Jaber said the vision of NAM would be realised if each member country sincerely abided by the decisions taken.
"We would support all efforts of the current chairman Malaysia to implement all decisions achieved at this summit," he said.
Al-Jaber said Kuwait was grateful for all the support rendered by Dr Mahathir when his country was facing a critical situation some years back.
He said Dr Mahathir's stance (on Kuwait's crisis) had strengthened international law and that the flag of the United Nations was respected.
The UN voice was also respected by the Kuwaiti government and its people, Al-Jaber said, adding that they would also extend their gratitude to NAM for translating its principles by coming out with a resolution to their advantage.
Cyprus' Permanent Representative to the UN, Sotos Zackheos, said the summit had given a new impact to the process of the revitalisation of NAM to make it more effective in promoting international peace and security as well as meeting the challenges of its members for sustainable development.
Zackheos, speaking on behalf of the European group, said the summit underlined the importance of the multilateral process for solving international issues.
"The message coming out of Kuala Lumpur is a strong endorsement for the search of peaceful solutions. What is needed now is the political will and determination of the members to further consolidate their collective efforts, and also to translate them into concrete actions," he said.
Guyana's Foreign Minister Samuel Hinds, on behalf of Latin America and the Caribbean, said the debate throughout the two-day leaders' meeting had generated plenty of ideas and proposals in the international arena.
"The success of the deliberations is in no small way attributed to skillful leadership of Dr Mahathir, and we look forward to Malaysia's guidance," he said.
Hinds said delegates had enjoyed observing the many colours of Malaysia through the cultural performance put up for them.
"The colours are not only symbolic of Malaysia's multi-racial population but also the rich diversity of our own movement and the harmony that can be achieved through fusion," he said.
Hinds also congratulated Cuba for being chosen as the next chairman of NAM and said the members would give it their full support as well.