On March 2, Ms. Sahiba Gafarova, Speaker of the Parliament of the Republic of Azerbaijan and Chairperson of the Non-Aligned Movement Parliamentary Network, delivered a speech at the Summit of NAM Contact Group on fight against COVID-19 held in Baku, Azerbaijan.
Ms. Sahiba Gafarova greeted participants of the Summit of NAM Contact Group on fight against COVID-19 and emphasized that Baku is hosting yet another important event that demonstrates the spirit of solidarity, dialogue and cooperation among the NAM Member States.
Chairperson of the NAM PN continued: “It is well known that the NAM played an important role in mobilizing global efforts to address the negative consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic. This time, taking resolute actions with regard to the post-pandemic recovery, the Non-Aligned Movement leads the way again through the further proactive initiatives of the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan, the Chair of the Movement, His Excellency Mr Ilham Aliyev. And I strongly believe that the discussions to be held at this Summit Meeting will generate new ideas, perspectives and opportunities for greater and closer global cooperation in post-pandemic recovery.
Ladies and gentlemen,
The institutional development of the NAM has been one of the main focal points of the Azerbaijani chairmanship. Thus, at the Baku Summit Meeting of the NAM held in October 2019 the heads of state and government decided to expand and deepen interaction and cooperation with involvement of the parliamentarians of the NAM Member States.
Acknowledging the significant role that parliamentarians can play in ensuring full and effective compliance with the founding principles of the Movement, President Ilham Aliyev as Chair of the NAM put forward an initiative to establish the Parliamentary Network of the NAM. The Network was inaugurated on the sidelines of the 143rd Assembly of the Inter-Parliamentary Union in Madrid in November 2021.
Ladies and gentlemen,
The Parliament of Azerbaijan started the work on procedural documents and working modalities, later communicated to the participating parliaments and agreed upon with them, immediately after the Inaugural Meeting of the Network so as to ensure its efficiency. The first conference of the Parliamentary Network was held in Baku in June 2022 bringing together more than 400 delegates from more than 40 parliaments and 8 inter-parliamentary entities, which was a clear manifestation of the importance given by the Member States to inter-parliamentary cooperation. The Baku Conference was a true milestone in the development of the Network. The Statute on Working Modalities of the Network, the Baku Declaration and the official logo and flag of the Network were adopted during it. The Chair and three Vice-Chairs of the Network were also elected for the next three years.
I have been present at several platforms including the G20 Parliamentary Speakers’ Summit Meeting in my capacity of Chair of the Parliamentary Network of the NAM in the period following its first conference. The main point of all my speeches at all these important international events and meetings with heads of member parliaments, bilateral as well as multilateral, has been the promotion of the Network’s ideas and goals. Advancing the values and principles of the NAM by strengthening solidarity and cooperation, and developing institutional dialogues with other organizations have been another paramount subject matter. Consequently, the Parliamentary Network has already established cooperation mechanisms with and has been granted observer status in several inter-parliamentary organizations. Work is underway to enlarge this scope.
The next conference of the Network will take place on 13th March on the sidelines of the 146th Assembly of the Inter-Parliamentary Union in Manama, Bahrain. Along with discussing parliamentary support to national and global efforts on post-pandemic recovery, we will also be exchanging ideas on the possible ways to further strengthen the institutional capacity of the Network there.
Ladies and gentlemen,
We are in the process of evolution and development of our Network still. But as its incumbent Chair I would like to share with you my firm belief that the Network is on the way to becoming an important asset for the promotion of ideals and principles of the NAM as well as of multilateralism, dialogue and inter-parliamentary cooperation. I call on all the Member States to further increase their engagement in and support to the Parliamentary Network of the Non-Aligned Movement.”