Non-Aligned Movement’s framework for Prompting Cultural Harmony

The world today is composed of States with diverse political, economic, social and cultural systems and religions determined by their history, traditions, values and cultural diversity, whose stability can be guaranteed by the universal recognition of their right to freely determine their own approach towards progressive development.

In this context, the Non-Aligned Movement has emphasized that respect for the diversity of such systems and approach is a core value which relations and cooperation among States in an increasingly globalising world should be based on, with the aim of contributing to establishing a peaceful and prosperous world, a just and equitable world order, and an environment conducive to exchanging human experiences. As such, the movement has developed a framework among its member states to promote cultural harmony.

The Movement opposes all attempts to impose on any State any particular model of political, economic, legal or cultural system, which may lead to global instability and weaken the security of States and their peoples. NAM strives to prevent and mitigate cultural homogenization as well as uniculturalism in the context of globalization, through increased intercultural dialogue and exchange guided by enhancing respect for and observance of cultural diversity.

The Movement has called upon its Member States to promote a culture of peace based on respect for sovereignty and territorial integrity of States, non-interference in the internal affairs of States, right to self-determination of peoples under foreign occupation and colonial domination, prevention of violence, promotion of non-violence, strict adherence to the principles of international relations as enshrined in the UN Charter, and full realization of the right to development.

As part of its framework for promoting cultural harmony, NAM has urged its Member States to take all necessary measures to prevent the use of new platforms, including the internet, digital social networking and mass media, in spreading extremist religious thoughts and ideas, which eventually undermine the culture of peace and religious diversity.

NAM’s overarching framework promotes the respect for the diversity of religions, beliefs, and cultures, and for prophets, religious symbols and Personalities, as part of the universal respect for peoples and civilizations and common heritage belonging to humankind.
NAM also calls upon the importance of the rule of education in the promotion of a culture of peace and dialogue among civilizations, religions and cultures, and the role of civil society, faith-based nongovernmental organizations and media as appropriate, in promoting interfaith, intercultural and inter-civilizational dialogue and understanding towards fostering cultural diversity, and the realization of internationally agreed goals, including the Millennium Development Goals;

The movement has called upon the NAM members to enhance their efforts in promoting the culture of peace, and dialogue among civilizations, religions and cultures, through various activities, including international and regional conferences and forums. Specifically, it has called for the Implementation of Manila Declaration and Programme of Action on Interfaith Dialogue and Cooperation for Peace and Development adopted by the Special NAM Ministerial Meeting on Interfaith Dialogue and Cooperation for Peace and Development held from in March 2010in Manila, Philippines. The Movement has also called for initiating discussions with a view to elaborate an international instrument on the elimination of all forms of religious intolerance, including ways to eliminate defamation of religions, and discrimination based on religion or belief.

NAM has also urged its Member State to contribute to the implementation of the agreements contained in the Tehran Declaration and Programme of Action on Human Rights and Cultural Diversity and, in this context has laid out a framework for promoting a NAM initiative on the subject in the Human Rights Council or the United Nations General Assembly as soon as possible and in this context, enhance the activities of the NAM Centre for Human Rights and Cultural Diversity and consider the approval of its charter.

To sum up, NAM recognizes the importance of respect and understanding for religious and cultural diversity throughout the world, of choosing negotiations over confrontation and of working together and not against each other.

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