Sri Lanka says Counter-terrorism must top NAM agenda - Sri Lanka Guardian

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Friday, May 1, 2009

Sri Lanka says Counter-terrorism must top NAM agenda

(May 01, Colombo, Sri Lanka Guardian) Addressing the Ministerial Meeting of the Non-Aligned Movement in Havana yesterday (30th April 2009), Sri Lanka’s Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, Hussein A. Bhaila, urged for greater international cooperation in combating terrorism. Praising the Sri Lankan security forces for their successful humanitarian operations, which helped rescue more than 150,000 civilians from the clutches of terrorists in the last ten days, the Deputy Minister stressed that the impressive advances made by the Government of Sri Lankan in the North under the leadership of President Mahinda Rajapaksa heralded the end of the road for terrorism and violence in the country.

Each sovereign State has an inalienable right to protect its territorial integrity and maintain peace and security and the rule of law within its borders, Deputy Minister Bhaila asserted. Emphasizing that counter-terrorism should remain on the top of the agenda of the Non-Aligned Movement, he maintained that “no entity postulating or practising terrorism should be allowed to claim to represent any community, ethnic or religious interests.”

The Deputy Minister identified the current financial and economic crisis as the leading cause for the decline in growth levels among developing countries and called for the Movement’s leadership to global processes to address this situation. Exacerbated by the ongoing financial crisis, numerous challenges including lack of food security and threats to energy security, had the potential to roll back national economic and development gains, so painfully realized by developing countries over the decades, the Deputy Minister added.

Deputy Minister, Hussein A. Bhaila led the Sri Lanka delegation to the 2-day NAM Ministerial Conference, which ended in the Cuban capital yesterday. This preparatory meeting to the forthcoming 15th NAM Summit in Egypt in July 2009 adopted the Final Document and Communiqué on the Situation in the Middle East. The meeting was attended by Foreign Ministers and high representatives of more than 125 Member States and Observer countries.
-Sri Lanka Guardian

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