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Wednesday, 20 February 1980
Page: 102

Mr CADMAN (MITCHELL, NEW SOUTH WALES) - My question is addressed to the Acting Minister for Foreign Affairs. What inferences may be drawn by non-aligned countries, whether in South East Asia, the Middle East, Africa or South America, from the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan?

Mr MacKELLAR - I think it is fair to say that members of the non-aligned movement, to which Afghanistan belongs, of course, have been deeply concerned and disturbed by the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan. One of the-basic tenets of non-alignment is that a country should be allowed to conduct its own affairs free from outside interference. Therefore it is not at all surprising that 2 1 members of the non-aligned movement co-sponsored the United Nations' resolution calling for the total withdrawal of foreign troops from Afghanistan. I remind the House that that resolution, which was adopted by the General Assembly by 104 votes to 18, was supported by a total of 56 members of the non-aligned movement. I believe those figures speak for themselves.

As some members of the Opposition have interjected, Cuba belongs to the non-aligned movement. In fact, those members of the nonaligned movement who voted against the resolution included Cuba, Vietnam, Mozambique and Angola. It is well known that those countries can be seen and said to be strongly aligned in a very real sense with the aims and ambitions of the Soviet Union. However, in voting against the resolution, that group was exposed as being at odds with the views of the majority of the nonaligned movement. This position was confirmed by the meeting of the Islamic Foreign Ministers in Islamabad, where 35 non-aligned countries were represented. I think it is fair to say that the response to date from the non-aligned movement indicates that a vast majority of the members of that movement share our concern at the Soviet Union's invasion of Afghanistan and at the unprincipled violation of the sovereignty and territorial integrity of a member of their own movement.

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