Since its inception, the Non-Aligned Movement has laid emphasis on achieving cultural diversity. NAM believes that the individual development, as well as that of the organization, is possible when the nations come together and that the economic and social rights are respected as the political and civil rights of a human being. The foundation of the organization has been laid upon the pillars of the nations working together and not against each other. It is with this agenda of working together with the concerted efforts of the nations that the world would recognize the importance of cultural and religious diversity and tolerance towards achieving the multilateral objectives and leading towards growth and development.

The dictionary defines the word tolerance as being patient, understanding and accepting something that is different. The NAM Member States have applied efforts in order to maintain peace, harmony and tolerance by setting an example to the rest of the world. Tolerance towards each other, accepting individuals in our society while simultaneously maintaining peace and civil society, is something that makes us civilized and responsible human beings.

In a very recent example set by the United Arab Emirates, the nation has declared the year 2019 as the Year of Tolerance, depicting the efforts towards achieving religious and cultural diversity. The move initiated by UAE has proclaimed that the efforts advanced by the nation would result in strengthening the nation’s role in fostering firmness and peace in the very field.

The President of UAE, Sheikh Khalifa, declared 2019 as the Year of Tolerance, putting the state under the spotlight of UAE being a global capital for tolerance through its policies. His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, is of the view that these initiatives would amalgamate the true sense of community and acceptance in the youth and the coming future generations of the society.

The move is a step, forwarded to bridge the gap between the people practising different cultures prospering in a respectful environment that dismisses terrorism and extremism while laying stress to embrace acceptance of others, different from us. Pope Francis’ visit to UAE in February 2019 signalled that the state is welcoming regional acceptance and tolerance. The significant efforts made by the UAE have gained remarkable appreciation from the United Nations. The Under-Secretary-General of the Counter-Terrorism Office of the global entity has recognized the moves of the state in the concerned fields to curb terrorism and violent extremism along with its venture stimulating peaceful co-existence, tolerance and diversity.

As the move upholds the tinctures of initiating peaceful coexistence and tolerance, the theme of the move was announced as an add-on to the Year of Zayed in 2018. In an attempt to promote the initiative, an agreement was signed by Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, the United States, Switzerland and Emirates Human Rights Association, Higher Colleges of Technology and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Co-operation.

Non-Aligned Movement has always reaffirmed that it is the duty and responsibility of the states to hold hands together and ensure that human rights and fundamental freedoms are being enjoyed by the citizens of the state.

The organization aims at the states, working towards developing a better understanding among all religions, beliefs and cultures to facilitate an exchange of human experiences and create an environment so that a dialogue between different societies can be eased. A nation’s path of development passes through the attributes of tolerance, multiculturalism, pluralism and societal integration and UAE has proved to be a society embracing coexistence, tolerance and openness to other cultures.

The organization, with its 120 Members, has recognized the importance of increasing tolerance and the gesture of living in harmony with a number of cultures that prevail in our society and has always laid stress for its Member States to roll out respect for the cultural diversity and approach as these form the fundamental layout on which the relations and cooperation among the world is based on, in a world that is accelerating towards globalization. With these efforts, the States lead towards a contribution for setting up a peaceful and flourishing environment with a justified and fair world order that enhance reciprocity of human affairs.