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Egypt to participate in 17th Summit of Non-Aligned Movement in Venezuela

One-hundred-twenty countries make up the Non-Aligned movement though it is not certain how many will be represented in Venezuela

Ahram Online , Thursday 15 Sep 2016
Hesham Badr
File photo of Egypt's deputy Foreign Minister for Multilateral Relations and International Security Hesham Badr. (Photo: Al-Ahram)
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Egypt's deputy Foreign Minister for Multilateral Relations and International Security Hesham Badr will participate in the 17th Summit of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) which is set to take place on the 17th and 18th of September on Venezuela's Margarita island.

The ministerial meetings will take place on Thursday and Friday ahead of the summit.

The NAM, born at the height of the Cold War as a grouping of nations seeking to be independent from the US and the former Soviet Union, counts 120 members -- overwhelmingly developing nations in the Middle East, Africa, Asia and Latin America.

The summit, which was planned to take place last year, is expected to tackle current issues of concern such as terrorism, UN reform, climate change and nuclear disarmament, according to media reports.

The last Non-Aligned Movement summit was hosted by Iran in 2012, which ousted former Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi attended.

Venezuela will assume the NAM rotating presidency after taking over this summit from Iran, which has been the chair since 2012.

At each summit, a new head of state formally becomes the chair, and assumes that position until the next summit. 

The 120 heads of members-states are invited to attend. Venezuela has not published a list of attendees, but according to Reuters, so far Iranian President Hassan Rouhani and Zimbabwe's President Robert Mugabe, are expected to attend.

According to its mandate, the primary objectives of the non-aligned countries is "the support of self-determination, and the independence of non-aligned countries from great power or block influences and rivalries; rejection of the use or threat of use of force in international relations."

Egypt's former president Gamal Abdel Nasser is among the founders of the movement.

The preparatory meeting for the NAM was held in Cairo in June 1961.

The Non Aligned Movement came into being 55 years ago when leaders of 25 developing countries met at the Belgrade Conference in September of the same year.

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