The cold war that prevailed between USA and Russia, after the end of the Second World War, largely influenced many countries and their economic and social activities. Two centers of power were created in the east and the west and most developing countries or third world countries were largely affected due to this separation of power. To show their unbiased concern towards both power blocs, the developing countries of the third world formed an allegiance with the leadership of certain heads of states in most African and Asian countries like India, Pakistan, Burma, Ceylon and Indonesia. There are 115 member countries in this allegiance and it was named the Non Aligned Movement.
The main purpose of the establishment of the non aligned movement was to make sure that the third world countries may not become pawns of the two power blocs. The countries wanted to stand firm as independent nations who are not under the influence of any super powered nations. A list of criteria was introduced in the preparatory meeting of the movement which was held in Cairo. According to the produced criteria, a country should have an independent policy on their existence and a non aligned policy concerning the activities of the main power blocs. Also a country should not have any bilateral or multilateral military agreement with any power bloc. These criteria were confirmed and adopted at the first meeting as Tito the Yugoslavian president being the conference organiser. The meeting was held in Belgrade in September 1961 with the participation of 25 non aligned nations. The conference’s main focus was on the increase of use and production of arms which could lead to a war between the Soviet Union and the United States.
Even at present, the movement continues to hold meetings every few years (mostly once in three years) with the intention of developing an independent path in world politics as developing nations. Cold war was not the only reason behind the forming of this allegiance between the developing nations. The three other main reasons can be known as right for independent judgment, strive against imperialism and neo colonialism. The NAM has no permanent secretary for their administration purposes and the presidency of the movement rotates among the member nations. The country holding the presidency becomes the conference organiser or the host of the summit.
The NAM continues to discuss matters affecting their member countries at the UN conferences and to take corrective actions concerning them. Self determination of Puerto Rico, self determination of Western Sahara, issues concerning sustainable development and many other issues relating to cultural diversity and human rights are outspoken by the movement.