Bandung Spirit-Genesis and Revitalization for 21st Century Speech Hamsa Abd El-Hamid

Bandung Spirit-Genesis and Revitalization for 21st Century

28-29 November 2005
Manila, Philippine


This year is the 50th Anniversary of the Bandung Afro-Asian Conference when 29 Asian and African countries met and discussed ways and means by which their people could complete decolonisation and achieve economic, political and economic liberation cooperation.

The Bandung conference formulated (10) principles among which special focus on the peaceful coexistence, mutual respect for territorial integrity and sovereignty, non-aggression, equality and mutual benefit.

The first Asian-African Conference recognized the need of consolidating political stability and economic development in the two continents.
There was a general desire for closer cooperation among them. Also, they declared that universal disarmament is an absolute necessity for the preservation of peace, and called upon all concerned to bring about the regulation, control and reduction of all armed forces and weapons. They considered that freedom and peace are interdependent, so they highlighted the right of self-determination that must be granted especially to those who are still dependent people.
These Bandung principles (or spirit) are not confined only the states but also to the peoples of Asia and Africa.
Thus, as a result the Afro-Asian Peoples' Solidarity Organization was established as a peoples movement with national committees to struggle firmly against colonialism and imperialism.
In 1961, the Bandung spirit gave birth to NAM. The NAM flourished during the 60s and 70s, as many African and Asian countries got their independence. This first Asian and African Bandung conference was considered a conference of emerging states that would like to form a third force to present the bi-polar system at that time.
Since then and in the last 50 years, many changes have taken place in the African and Asian countries. New issues emerged such as democracy, human rights, development, environment, women and others. These changes emerged from the end of the cold war and the weakness of the regimes in Asian and African countries.
In spite of these challenges, the Bandung principles is still relevant but has to change in keeping with the present situation and in full accordance with the new realities of this time of global challenges.
The serious challenge we face is the unilateral hegemony of the US that forms a new global imperial order and insecurity to humanity.
Many challenges were highlighted yesterday through the discussions such as the dangerous role played by the WTO and how globalization and privatization which increase the rates of poverty and unemployment and exploit the social strata especially in the south countries.
Also, the question of H.R. was highlighted as you know most of Asian and African countries signed and ratified the agreements and conventions on H.R. but still violate violation of human rights continuos. For example, there is a discrimination against women although the declaration on H.R. stated that women's rights are an integral part of human rights. The UNDP report in 2003 indicated that in the Arab world, the empowerment of women is still to be realized. Not only this, but also most of Asian and African countries that signed and ratified the convention on the Elimination of Discrimination against women set some reservations on its articles which means to sign without being compelled to implement it. The discrimination against women also found on the legal, labor, and education. On the other hand men were given priorities in all fields based approach are missing on the policy making process.

In addition to that, the regimes of some NAM Countries are undemocratic. They are corrupted so they refuse to be questioned. They impose certain procedures to maintain ruling their countries for a long time and according to their own benefits. These procedure are the use of emergency laws, military courts, imprisoning of human rights activists, politicians, journalists, academics, ... etc. They put constraints on the establishment of new NGOs and prevent the established ones from practicing their works freely.
They use the army, the media and all governmental institutions for their own sake.

No doubt the lack of democracy and good governance create undesirable elements to human security as terrorists, illegal migrants, trafficking on women and children, child labour, spreading of diseases....... and others.
All these challenges must be faced with a new Bandung emerging from civil society institutions to form a counter hegemonic alliance.
As an example, the "world social forum", the "world peace forum" and other fora that present alternative world. These groupings are from different ethnics, religious, political, women, farmers, workers, and indigenous people. They unite themselves to say no to the neo-liberal version of the global political economy.

Today is the international Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian peoples (29 November), so we distribute a paper alerting the Israeli plan for controlling over the Eat Jerusalem. It is prepared by a group of civil society organizations as to oppose this Israeli government measures that violate the international legitimacy and human rights conventions and to reaffirm that occupied Palestinian. East Jerusalem should be accepted as the Capital of the Future Palestinian State.

As last year, the mayor in Jerusalem presented a town-planning scheme that will change the demography of Palestinian Populations in the city and will reduce the size of the land area available for use by Palestinians since 1967.

We request you to support the Palestinian peoples in their struggle and to condemn the Israeli's continued illegal actions that violate and contradict with international laws and human rights resolutions and to all peaceful agreements.

Thank you.


Speech of Hamsa Abd El- Hamid Genidy

Afro-Asian Peoples' Solidarity Organization (AAPSO)

Back to
The Meetings & Conferences List