Back to PLO Bulletin 1-15 September 1979



Not far away from the doors of the biggest imperialist country, the U.S.A., the Non-aligned Summit convened in Havana, the Cuban capital. The Non-Aligned Summit in Cuba can be considered as a great success for the anti-imperialist live of the Non-aligned movement. It was also a blow to all forces who had hoped and worked for a split in the Movement only because the Summit was held in Cuba under the auspices of the distinguished Cuban Leader Fidel Castro.

The Non-aligned Summit which took place from 3-8 September, encompassed the majority of the developing nations who are emerging as a new political force on the world arena. Ninety-four member states and organizations such as the PLO and SWAPO reiterated their positions on imperialism, colonialism and pledged to intensify their efforts for peace, justice and progress all over the world.

Although it has lost its historical figures such as Nehru, Sukarno and Nasser, the Non-aligned Movement still enjoys great respect within the third world nations. At the age of 87, President Tito of Yugoslavia was, the oldest and sole historical figure, still committed to the principles of the Movement. There is no doubt that new political figures emerged at this Summit to replace the historical figures, such as Castro, Arafat, Samora Machel, Kenneth Kaunda and others.

In spite of the different social and economic systems of the member states, they expressed similar views on different international issues such as the Kampuchean problem, the Middle East conflict and the Western Sahara. In the final session of the conference some of the member states expressed their reservations on those heated issues, but finally the resolutions were passed by the majority. There is no doubt that it is due to the wise chairmanship of Fidel Castro that the conference was able to maintain its democratic nature. The conference agreed to keep the seat of Kampuchea vacant because of the dispute between the old regime of Pol Pot and the news pro-Vietnam regime and accepted to form an ad hoc commission to follow up developments an this matter. The Sahrawi problem resulted in a condemnation of Morocco, but only because it occupied the region evacuated by Mauritania.

The most debated issues were the Camp David agreement and the suspension of Egyptian membership, which were transmitted to the conference in an Arab working paper. The objection to the final draft resolution which asked for the condemnation of the Camp David agreement and the Egyptian-Israeli peace treaty, came mostly from some pro-Western African delegates.

In the final session which lasted almost thirteen hours Chairman Arafat took the floor to point out the importance of such a resolution. Chairman Arafat referred in his speech to the continuous Israeli bombardments against Palestinian and Lebanese civilians in Southern Lebanon. He wondered whether the Israeli land, sea, and air shelling and bombardments coincide with the Camp David "peace" treaty. "The condemnation of the separate peace treaty might help to stop this hell imposed on us", Chairman Arafat said.

It is noteworthy to mention that all the speakers at the Sixth Summit considered the Palestinian problem as a central world issue. All the speakers unanimously asked for en equitable settlement of the Palestinian problem. Anti-Zionism was one of the main slogans at the conference and among the neon signs of Havana during the night you always read. "Contra el Sionismo."

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