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Working Mechanisms

Held in ordinary session once every three years, the Summit of Heads of State and Government is the highest decision making body of NAM. It is held to review progress in the implementation of the outcomes of the previous Summit, as well as addressing existing, new and emerging issues of collective concern and interest to the NAM.

The country hosting the Summit becomes the NAM Chair for the next three consecutive years. However, under exceptional circumstances, the chairmanship can extend beyond the three years. For example, due to the Coivd-19 pandemic outbreak, the chairmanship of Azerbaijan was extended for one (1) more year.

Ministers of Foreign Affairs meet usually in four forms, namely:

  • Meeting of Ministers of Foreign Affairs of the Coordinating Bureau – which is usually held four months before the Summit. It is held in the country holding the chairmanship, primarily to prepare for the next Summit.
  • Meeting of Ministers of Foreign Affairs immediately preceding the Meeting of Heads of State and Government at the Summit. As with the Summit, this meeting takes place once in three years.
  • Mid-Term Meeting of Ministers of Foreign Affairs – which is held eighteen (18) months after the Summit, to review progress in the implementation of decisions of the Summit.
  • Annual Meetings of Ministers of Foreign Affairs on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly. These are held every September during the High-level week (General Debate) of the General Assembly.

Note: In addition to the above, Ministers of Foreign Affairs may meet as and when required to address matters of an urgent nature

As and when appropriate, some work and issues of common interest can be discussed by the Troika (Previous Chair; Current Chair; and Incoming Chair).

The NAM Coordinating Bureau, composed of Permanent Representatives in New York is the technical coordinating arm of the Movement. The Bureau handles NAM matters on a regular basis, usually through monthly meetings. However, the Bureau can meet as and when necessary.

Day-to-day, some of the work of NAM is carried out by Working Groups, on behalf of the Coordinating Bureau. Currently, the NAM Working Groups (WG) are chaired by the following countries:

  • Algeria – WG Reform of the UN and revitalization of the General Assembly
  • Egypt - WG on the Reform of the UN Security Council
  • Indonesia – WG on Disarmament
  • Cuba – WG on Human Rights
  • Morocco – WG on peacekeeping operations
  • Iran – WG on Legal Matters
  • Venezuela – WG on Unilateral Coercive Measures
  • Bangladesh – Peacebuilding Caucus