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Bhutan as vice chair of the 16th NAM summit

Bhutan has been elected as one of the vice chairs of the 16th summit of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM), which began in the capital city of Iran, Tehran, on 30 August.

Prime Minister Lyonchhen Jigmi Y Thinley delivered a statement at the summit’s opening session as the Vice Chair of the summit on behalf of the Asia-Pacific states of the NAM after the Summit opened with Iran assuming the Chair from Egypt for the next three years.

Lyonchhen conveyed the gratitude of the Asian group members of the NAM to the people and government of the Islamic Republic of Iran. He said that “just as we are touched by the generosity and warmth of the Iranian hospitality, we are also inspired by the history and culture of this great nation. And we are certain that the city of Tehran will deliver to our summit a very successful outcome.”

The summit’s inaugural session was also marked by opening remarks of President of the Islamic Republic of Iran Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Egyptian President Muhammed Morsi and UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon.

Lyonchhen said that as Egypt passes on to Iran the mantle of the Movement’s leadership, the Asia Pacific region wishes to place on record deep appreciation for the outstanding manner in which the outgoing Chair steered NAM through a tumultuous period. One certainty in out turbulent world, Lyonchhen said, is the rapidity and growing complexity of change and so the future years will be increasingly challenging. “But the dedication and commitment with which Iran assumed the role of stewardship, give us the confidence that NAM will continue to be a powerful and positive force in shaping the destiny of human society,” he said adding that to this end, the Asian group welcomes the offer of Venezuela to host the next summit.

He also said that the high quality of the reports and the outcome documents which are about to be adopted, bear not only evidence of the knowledge but hard work of the teams of both the outgoing and current chairs. Lyonchhen said that they also speak eloquently of the spirit of understanding and accommodation with which the member states are prepared to cooperate towards a more peaceful, harmonious and happier world. He assured the gathering that the Asian pacific group will continue to contribute actively and meaningfully to the principles, vision and endeavour of the Movement.

Meanwhile, Lyonchhen met with the President of Benin Dr. Thomas Yayi Boni, who currently holds the presidency of the African Union, His Royal Highness the Prince of Jordan Hassan bin Talal, special envoy of the Prime Minister of Australia Julia Gillard and the leader of the delegation of Vietnam. He also met and interacted with several other heads of states and governments, and leaders of delegations.

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