The Non-aligned Movement



The debate about what non-alignment means began in the 1950s and continues today, during and after Havana. Its terms have changed, but the questions still reflect doubts about its meaning, and indeed relevance. Definition is difficult. But the countries concerned continue to meet; and in so doing they reflect the moods and events of the Third World whose perception of itself and its problems is of the utmost importance in understanding the development of the movement. Perhaps non-alignment can best be understood as ‘an aspiration towards a general coexistence of nations and states regardless of their size, economic power, differences in social and political systems, in race, religion, language or historical and cultural heritage. Non-alignment is a long-term policy, something more than the mere holding of occasional meetings which, regardless of the number of participants and level, have the exclusive character of consultations before a new action.’1


Foreign Minister Mutual Assistance World Affair Peaceful Coexistence World Peace 
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© Gwyneth Williams 1981

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