The Non-Aligned Movement is of the view that the United Nations is the central and indispensable forum for addressing issues relating to international cooperation, economic development and social progress, peace and security, human rights and the rule of law, based on dialogue, cooperation and consensus-building among States. In this context, the Movement attaches high importance to the strengthening of the role of the United Nations and recognizes the efforts taken to develop its full potential.
One of the major objectives of Non-Aligned Movement is the maintenance of international peace and security. Since its inception, the question of peaceful settlement of disputes ranks highly among the issues to be addresses by NAM. The Manila Declaration of 1982 on the Peaceful Settlement of International Disputes which was approved by resolution 37/10 was elaborated at the initiative of the Non-Aligned countries.
NAM fully supports all efforts in promoting peaceful settlement of disputes based on provisions of international law and the Charter of the United Nations, in particular its Article 33. Towards this end, the Non-Aligned Movement has submitted a proposal to the United Nations on the peaceful settlement of disputes and impact on the maintenance of peace. The major points of NAM’s proposal submitted at 2015 session of the Special Committee on the Charter of the United Nations and on the Strengthening of the Role of the Organization are examined below.
NAM’s proposal is aimed at obtaining an assessment of the current use of peaceful means for the settlement of disputes. NAM has expressed the importance of the role of the United Nations to bring about settlement of such international disputes which might lead to a breach of the peace, taking into consideration that there are disputes in current international relations that could endanger international peace and security.
NAM’s proposal reaffirms that provisions of Chapter VI of the Charter of the United Nations are integral to the peaceful means for the settlement of disputes. It also states that as provided in Article 2, paragraph 4, of the Charter, all Member States of the United Nations shall refrain in their international relations from the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any State, or in any other manner inconsistent with the purposes of the United Nations.
The proposal also gives importance to Article 33 of the UN Charter which stipulates that the parties to any dispute, the continuance of which is likely to endanger the maintenance of international peace and security, shall, first of all, seek a solution by negotiation, enquiry, mediation, conciliation arbitration, judicial settlement, resort to regional agencies or arrangements, or other peaceful means of their own choice.
NAM’s proposal also states that Security Council should fully implement the relevant provisions of Chapter VI, in particular Article 33, and avoid resorting to Chapter VII of the Charter as a general framework to address conflicts which do not necessarily represent a threat to international peace and security.
NAM has also suggested that the International Law Commission should consider including in its programme of work, a study on the obligation of States to use peaceful means for settling their international disputes.
NAM’s proposal also entails an annual review of the Special Committee. At the 2017 session of the Special Committee on the Charter of the United Nations and on the Strengthening of the Role of the Organization held from 21 February -1 March, the sponsor delegation of the Non –Aligned Movement reiterated that the suggested annual review of the issue by the Special Committee would be based on a compilation by the Secretariat of information on relevant practices and successful experiences in the peaceful settlement of disputes by Member States and that such information would be submitted by Member States on a voluntary basis.