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Non-Aligned Movement (NAM)

The Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) was officially established in 1961, at the Belgrade Summit, hosted by President Josip Broz Tito, following the discussions that were triggered during the Afro-Asian Conference of 1955, hosted by President Sukarno, and which resulted in the adoption of the Bandung Principles that up to date still serve as the purposes and objectives of the policy of non-alignment, and which have governed relations between big and small nations. The first summit of the NAM was held in Belgrade, now the capital of Serbia, in 1961, with the participation of 29 countries. It is now a forum of 120 developing states that are not formally aligned with or against any major power bloc. There are also 17 countries and 10 International Organizations that hold an Observer status. After the United Nations, it is the largest grouping of states worldwide. The following are considered the founding fathers and historic leaders of the Movement: Joseph Broz Tito (President of Yugoslavia), Gamal Abdel Nasser (President of Egypt), Jawaharlal Nehru (Prime Minister of India), Sukarno (President of Indonesia), and Kwame Nkrumah (President of Ghana), who decided to declare it as a Movement, with a view to avoid the bureaucratic implications of an International Organization. Unlike the United Nations (UN) or the Organization of American States, the Non-Aligned Movement has no formal constitution or permanent secretariat. All members of the Non-Aligned Movement have equal weight within its organization. The movement’s positions are reached by consensus in the Summit Conference of Heads of State or Government, which, by convention, convenes every three years. The administration of the organization is the responsibility of the country holding the chair, a position that rotates at every summit.

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