NAM leaders unite in the fight against COVID-19

Muhyiddin delivers his speech during the Online Summit Level Meeting of the NAM Contact Group in Response to COVID-19 at Perdana Putra, Putrajaya, May 4, 2020. –fotoBERNAMA

BAKU: The heads of member countries of the Non Aligned Movement (NAM) came together via a video conference yesterday to address the ongoing global COVID-19 crisis.

The summit, initiated by current NAM chairman Azerbaijan's President Ilham Aliyev, took off here yesterday as the leaders joined the meet under the body's Contact Group format for the meet themed "United Against COVID-19".

Ilham Aliyev made the opening speech at the Summit followed by an address from the President of the United Nations General Assembly Tijjani Muhammad-Bande.

This was followed by video messages from the UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, Director-General of the World Health Organization Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus and Chairperson of the African Union Commission Moussa Faki Mahamat.

A video message from the EU Commission Vice-President Josep Borrell was also featured before the summit continued with speeches from heads of NAM countries.

Given that the Non-Aligned Movement includes 120 countries, the Summit was held in the format of a Contact Group with the participation of countries in Europe, Asia, Africa and Latin America, based on the principle of geographic representation.

During his speech, Ilham Aliyev, who is also chairman of the Cooperation Council of Turkic-Speaking States, spoke of the efforts taken and continue to be taken by his country in the fight against the new coronavirus.

He also said his country was ready to share its experience in combating the COVID-19 with other member countries of NAM.

Among other leaders who have joined the Summit and expected to present their views include Malaysian Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, Indonesia's President Joko Widodo.