Non-Aligned Nations Urged to Help Counter US Unilateralism

Non-Aligned Nations Urged to Help Counter US Unilateralism Non-Aligned Nations Urged to Help Counter US Unilateralism

Iran on Wednesday called on non-aligned nations and other members of the international community to stand united against US unilateralism, including by helping the implementation of a regional peace plan proposed by Tehran.
"There is an urgent need for a unified stance by the international community to compel the US to reverse its dangerous course to avert a global catastrophe," Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif told a preparatory ministerial meeting of the Non-Aligned Movement in Baku, Azerbaijan, the Foreign Ministry's website reported. 
Formed in 1961, NAM is a grouping of 120 developing countries that do not want to align themselves with any major superpower. The movement provided an alternative for nations that did not back either the United States or Soviet Union during the Cold War. Seventeen states and 10 international organizations currently have observer status. 
President Hassan Rouhani is scheduled to attend the 18th NAM Summit on Thursday. He will hold bilateral meetings with officials from participating countries to discuss bilateral ties as well as the latest regional and international developments. 
In his speech, Zarif said, "An escalating contempt for diplomacy, multilateralism and international cooperation has exacerbated the chronic challenges and increased uncertainties around the globe. International law, multilateral agreements, Security Council resolutions and the norms of civilized behavior are all seemingly being sacrificed for personal political ambitions." 
He cited US President Donald Trump's withdrawal from the 2015 nuclear deal last year despite Iran's full compliance as a "major disrupting element" in the region and beyond. 
"The American economic war—indeed its economic terrorism—targeting ordinary Iranian people … is not just a willful and publicly-announced crime against humanity, but a grave and immediate threat to international peace and security." 



Addiction to Sanctions 

The senior diplomat said the US addiction to sanctions against the people of many non-aligned countries, including Cuba, Venezuela, Syria, Iran and even major powers such as China and Russia, is undermining the fabric of international economic relations and putting hundreds of millions of people, as well as global commerce, at risk. 
"Today, the United States has even proven its propensity to betray its own clients. Many have learned that it is wishful—if not suicidal—to expect the US to provide them protection and support," he said. 
Zarif said ordinary people are paying the price for the US reckless behavior. 
"It is absolutely imperative for the members of our movement to close ranks and engage in collective and innovative thinking—and action—to reverse this course, or at least to reduce its impact on our peoples," he said. 



Hormuz Peace Plan 

Zarif noted that a regional peace initiative called Hormuz Peace Endeavor, which was introduced by Rouhani at the United Nations General Assembly in September, can be a good starting point. 
"It aims to promote dialogue, mutual respect and equal footing, respect for sovereignty, territorial integrity and the inviolability of international borders; peaceful settlement of all disputes; rejection of the threat or use of force; non-aggression and non-intervention in internal or external affairs of each other; and energy security and the free flow of resources," he said. 
The foreign minister said Iran invites its neighbors and partners in NAM to help enrich and implement the initiative.
Zarif also called for international support for the people of Palestine and Yemen who are suffering as a result of the "vendetta" against the world order. 

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