We have already had the honour and privilege of addressing this historic assembly of Heads of State or Government of Non-Aligned Countries on behalf of the national liberation movements. It now remains for me to intervene in the name of the African National Congress and on behalf of the objects of colonialism, apartheid, racism, fascism and brutal exploitation in South Africa.
The delegation of the African National Congress salutes Havana, this beautiful city of peaceful labour, social progress, enduring friendship and active solidarity. Today Havana, like the people of Cuba, has planted itself in the hearts of the hundreds of millions of people represented at this Sixth Summit of the Non-Aligned Movement, because Havana this week carries within its city walls the potential power of more than 100 leaders of nations who, acting together in unity and with determination, can exert a positive influence on the course of world developments, especially when they have as their helmsman and chief servant the tried and tested leader of the victorious Cuban Revolution, Fidel Castro Ruz.
What imperialism feared about the consequences of a Non-Aligned Summit being held in Havana, with Cuba serving as Chairman of the Movement, is precisely what gives the victims of imperialist domination great hopes about this Conference and the future.
We extend our warm congratulations to you, Comrade President Fidel Castro, on your election. History has entrusted you with the task of leading this great Movement into the decade of the `80s, confronting you with the challenge to set both the quality and the tempo of the struggle for that decade. Our confidence in your ability to meet that challenge is unbounded.
Mr. Chairman, for the peoples of southern Africa, the convening of this meeting in Havana has a special significance, for we can never forget the first occasion in our history when the troops crossed the oceans and came to our continent - this time, not to conquer, rob, pillage and plunder, but to help a people's fight for freedom, justice and liberation. The unique army that helped the people of Angola to repel the invaders from racist Pretoria came from Cuba, and with their blood they cemented the bonds between Cuba and southern Africa, helped to defend the gains of our revolutionary struggles and laid the foundations for the greater victories which today, some four years later, we can justify claim.
Mr. Chairman, in southern Africa we are today engaged in wars of liberation necessary in order to achieve the realisation of the objectives which this Movement holds sacred and inviolate. The specific character of our struggle has been determined by the conditions in which we have had to conduct it. But the common objectives that link the peoples still struggling for liberation with those who have gained their independence arise from our shared experience - experience compounded of alien rule and economic exploitation.
All our peoples have without exception known the humiliation of living in a country which was our own but which the superior power of alien and hostile forces had annexed and transformed into their patrimony. We have all known the indignity of living under rulers who tried to deny us a personality of our own, who decried our history and derided our cultural traditions, who allowed us no names and no future except to the extent that they chose, and such a future as accorded with the perpetuation of their own interests.
All our peoples also share the experience of resistance to colonialism. If we turn our minds back to the last decades of the 19th century and the opening years of the 20th, we find that with few exceptions we were all engaged in wars of resistance.
This was the period that saw the end of Spanish hegemony in Latin America and the early beginnings of the revolution launched by Jose Marti in Cuba. The people of Argentina, trying to end foreign domination of their economy, found themselves facing British gunboats. In Vietnam there was a people's uprising following the refusal of the king of ratify a treaty establishing a French protectorate. Throughout Africa our people were engaged in wars defending their land and countries against alien conquerors. It was in the course of these resistance wars in Africa that the British Army suffered its greatest defeat at the Battle of Isandlwana in 1879, exactly 100 years ago this year.
The forms of our struggle took varied; the uniforms worn by our enemies were different; and the alien flags that flew over our countries were numerous. Yet in essence we have all been struggling against the same forces, and we have all been fighting for the same thing: the right of our peoples to self-determination, to control their own land and wealth, to establish their own political systems and govern their own countries, to organise the economic and social relations in their society according to their own precepts and ethic, to live in peace - guaranteed by an equitable world system of economic relations.
These aims are no different from the objectives formulated 18 years ago when the collective strength of the peoples who shared this experience and won their independence was harnessed into the Non-Aligned Movement. These are the same objectives that we share today, though perhaps formulated differently.
Thus, Mr. Chairman, the liberation movements and the independent countries of the Non-Aligned Movement are joined not only by their common experience but also by the fact that they share the present with common objectives and a common enemy.
Those who wish to deride the Non-Aligned Movement choose to interpret the term "non-aligned" as something purely negative and suggest that the raison d'etre of our existence is to constantly assert what we belong to no side, to devote our efforts and our energies to walking a tightrope, to become a function of the changing relations between East and West, to submit ourselves to the constraints of a policy of avoidance.
It is our submission, Mr. Chairman, that the existence and strength of this Movement lies in its consistent determination to stand firmly, unequivocally and unambiguously on the side of freedom, self-determination and justice and to stand equally firmly, unequivocally and unambiguously against alien domination, dependence economic exploitation, colonialism, racism, fascism, and Zionism - to be totally and uncompromisingly anti-imperialist.
It is these positions by the Non-Aligned Movement which have made the Movement so strong, so powerful, that this Summit has been attended by the large numbers of delegations who are participating today. Referring to the size of this meeting, Comrade Fidel Castro described it as an unmistakable sign of the vigour, strength and prestige of the Movement of Non-Aligned Countries. President Tito likewise said that the fact that our gathering is attended by representatives of more than one hundred countries, accounting for two-thirds of mankind, in itself strongly bears out the historical validity of the policy of non-alignment and testifies to the successes recorded along the road covered by the Movement since its first conference in Belgrade in 1961.
Zbigniew Brezinski, President Carter's National Security Adviser said something of the same view in a statement in June this year at the Washington Press Club. He said, and I quote: "For the last 600 years, world affairs have been dominated largely by the outward thrust of Euro-centric peoples. In the last 30 years, the rest of the world has become not only politically awakened but politically organised. We are facing a massive awakening and growing self-assertiveness of peoples in Africa, Asia and Latin America who previously were the objects of policies originating in the Euro-centric world. They are now becoming, assertively also, the subjects of policy."
It is our submission, Comrade Chairman, that this is a testimony to the strength of the Non-Aligned Movement based on its consistently anti-imperialist positions.
Mr. Chairman, in tracing the South African struggle from the era of colonial conquest experienced by members of the Non-Aligned Movement, we have pointed to the colonial nature of our oppression in South Africa. It is, however, necessary to make the point that so arrogant, so brutal, so comprehensive and systematic is this oppression that it offends grievously against the very humanity of the indigenous and black majority of the people of South Africa. In addition, it denies the humanity of the delegates of this very Summit because it despises and demeans not just this or that nation but whole races and peoples of entire continents, the overwhelming majority of mankind.
Apartheid South Africa, the only country in the world which has codified the doctrine of racial superiority into a statutory system and which has established it as the basis of State ideology and policy, therefore constitutes a laboratory and a nursery of international racism. Here there are formed and nurtured the bacilli which continually feed the diseases of racist arrogance and racial discrimination. This fact was recognised by the United Nations General Assembly when it inaugurated the Decade of struggle against Racism. Furthermore, the extremely serious national and international implications of the incidence of racism were recognised by the world community when it adopted, at the United Nations, the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination as well as the International Convention on the Suppression and Punishment of the Crime of Apartheid. To ensure the fulfilment of the aims of both the United Nations and the world community, the seed-bed of international racism, which is the South African regime, must be destroyed. This is what our struggle seeks to achieve.
At the heart of the South African problem, Mr. Chairman, is the economic position of the black majority of our country. Our struggle aims radically to alter the status quo with regard to this issue also. It is no longer necessary within the Movement of Non-Aligned Countries to argue the centrality of this question in the struggle to ensure genuine liberation and social progress for our peoples.
The decisive importance of economic questions was recognised in the decisions of the Third Lusaka Summit and rightly took pride of place in the Fourth Algiers Summit. Correctly, this Summit drew attention to the role of the multinational corporations.
As we all know, the decisions of the Algiers Summit and the Lima Declaration adopted in August 1975 served as the collective platform of the United Nations General Assembly in 1974 and 1975 which resulted, among other things, in the adoption of two documents which are of great importance to the future of our peoples, the future of the non-aligned countries and peoples: namely, the Declaration on the Establishment of a New International Economic Order and the Charter of the Economic Rights and Duties of States.
Mr. Chairman, we would like, at this point, to pay our humble respects to a great African, to a great Arab leader, an outstanding leader of the Movement, the late Houari Boumediene, who worked so tirelessly to bring about the New International Economic Order. Our victories on this front will be a monument to his name, a tribute to a life dedicated to the upliftment of the children, the small men and small women of the world - the "wretched of the earth".
It is in contrast with the intensified struggle for an equitable international economic order, especially in the last five years, that the iniquity of the South African apartheid colonial economy stands out in sharp relief.
Within the context of the struggle for the democratic restructuring of international economic relations, our peoples are fighting to put an end to their dependent and subordinate status; to regain sovereignty over their natural resources; to abolish the privileged status of the imperialist Powers in the world economy, which, as pointed out in the Lima Declaration, are striving to reinforce their position by exploiting our peoples through unequal terms of trade, the export by the multinational corporations of the revenues of their subsidiaries in our countries, the charging and repatriation of exorbitant interest and other financial charges and the supply of goods to our peoples at high monopoly prices.
Exactly during these five years when the Non-Aligned Movement has been formulating these demands and struggling for their realisation, the multinational corporations, identified at the Fourth Summit as the enemies of the political, economic and social progress of our peoples, have been tightening their hold on our country, South Africa.
Acting in concert with the white minority regime, these corporations have been further entrenching exactly the forms of economic relations with regard to our people which this Movement is determined to alter fundamentally. All recent and current measures undertaken by the apartheid regime i the sphere of economic life have the express intention of strengthening the old, colonial and exploitative economic order. This was the purpose and the result of the much publicised Riekert and Wiehahn Commissions. It is the aim of the continued implementation of the bantustan programme and the much publicised idea of a constellation of puppet States which would be chained to the Pretoria regime. It is also the reason for the intensified campaign of removals of thousands of our people from the towns and cities and from their ancestral lands and the deprivation of their South African citizenship.
We fight for a new international economic order because the privileged status of the imperialist Powers in the world economy is resulting in the continued and accelerated impoverishment of our peoples and the all-round regression of our countries. In apartheid South Africa these tendencies have an impact on our people that is multiplied a number of times over because the political authority that has seized control of our country is itself a representative, a product and an ally of the world economic forces that are responsible for the despoliation of our national resources and the fruits of our labour.
As a result of these circumstances, which ensure the multinational corporations unique and stupendous profits as well as strengthen their monopoly positions on the world economy, any South African directory of companies reads like a virtual Who's Who of the leading industrial and financial institutions of the Western world.
In this connection, it is important to note that, far from the demands of developing countries for an equitable restructuring of international economic relations being met, there is an inordinate transfer of resources to support and maintain the apartheid regime. Between 1972 and 1978, nearly US $8 billion went to buttress the apartheid economy through loans from Western banks. Western countries have invested more in developing the manufacturing industry in South Africa than their total investment in similar enterprises on the entire African continent, and the transfer of all kinds of technology is on a still greater scale.
There can be no doubt that these transfers are not accidental but are a deliberate effort to strengthen apartheid South Africa at the expense of the developing countries with the express aim of enhancing our country's role as the spearhead of the imperialist Powers and the multinational corporations for the defeat of our efforts to establish the New International Economic Order.
Nowhere is the political and strategic motivation of Western investment in apartheid more apartment than in the efforts to assist the regime to meet its oil needs. In 1976, West German banks, many of them State-controlled, provided Pretoria's strategic oil fund with loans amounting to US $140 million. By early this year, such loans had exceeded the figure of US $140 million. The Governments of Britain, France and West Germany unhesitatingly provide export guarantees for equipment for the SASOL plants, facilities not easily extended to many developing countries.
Mr. Chairman, it is against this background that the African National Congress today hails the decision of Iran, freed of the Shah, to cut the supply of oil to South Africa, depriving the racist regime of 90 per cent of its imported oil supplies. Likewise, the ANC salutes the Federal Republic of Nigeria, which has acted firmly and decisively against oil companies acting in breach of Nigeria's policy. In the actions they have taken, both these countries, member States of the Non-Aligned Movement, have contributed to the victory of the South African liberation struggle and to the effectiveness of the Non-Aligned Movement itself. They have provided a dramatic example of the difference between rhetoric and action, to quote President Fidel Castro.
The people of Nicaragua, Mr. Chairman, led by the Sandinista Movement, have scored a heroic victory against fascist domination and have promptly severed diplomatic relations with the fascist South African regime. Nicaragua has become a worthy member of the Non-Aligned Movement. We greet and salute the fraternal, heroic Nicaraguan people.
Worldwide support for the struggle for national liberation is a striking feature of international concern for justice, dignity and peace. In turn, national liberation movements feel a natural identity with the cause of liberation everywhere in the world. This explains the firm solidarity of the African National Congress with the struggle of the people of Puerto Rico and the Puerto Rican Socialist Party against United States colonial domination, for self-determination and independence.
Mr. Chairman, in entering into an agreement with the POLISARIO of Western Sahara and abrogating the contract with Spain, Mauritania has retrieved something of the otherwise battered honour and image of our continent. The infinitely just cause of the people of Western Sahara will triumph.
The struggle of the fraternal Arab people of Palestine, led by the PLO, will always be assured of the support of the African National Congress and the entire fighting people of South Africa. Like everybody else, we condemn the Camp David Agreement, which has surely proved an unblemished disaster, both for the unity of the Arab peoples and the progress of the struggle against Zionism in the Middle East. Likewise, we support the struggle of the island peoples of the Canaries and Mayotte and of Belize.
The African National Congress, reiterates its solidarity with the Vietnamese people, whose 30 years' struggle against French colonialism and United States imperialism constitutes one of the greatest chapters in the history of national liberation struggles. The African National Congress welcomes the end of the agony brought on the Kampuchean people by the deposed Pol Pot regime.
The people of East Timor, under the leadership of FRETILIN, are fighting for self-determination and independence, precisely the causes espoused by the Non-Aligned Movement. We express our solidarity with FRETILIN.
In southern Africa, the sister movements of the ANC namely, SWAPO and the Patriotic Front - are waging fierce struggles for the liberation of Namibia and Zimbabwe, respectively, struggles which are, by definition, aimed also at the liberation of South Africa. Today the African National Congress congratulates the Patriotic Front on its admission to full membership in the Non-Aligned Movement, a status already enjoyed by SWAPO of Namibia. This ensures that the voice of the people of Zimbabwe and Namibia will also be the voice of the millions represented in the Non-Aligned Movement. The African National Congress similarly congratulates all other new members, whose role in the Movement can only increase its international weight and advance the cause of unity and peace.
We are particularly happy to welcome countries of Latin America who have come to join and reinforce this Movement for its greater effectiveness against the forces of imperialism and fascism.
In South Africa, the national liberation struggle, developing within the very heart of the enemy camp, has assumed proportions and created a situation which the racist regime has described as a virtual state of war, particularly in the northern part of our country.
Confronted with this situation, the apartheid regime is engaged in activities which can only be described as running very hard but remaining on the spot.
Within the ruling group, the military establishment is taking over all positions of political authority in the illusory hope that this will help save the regime from destruction. The so-called information scandal, on the other hand, has exposed to the white population what the oppressed people have known for a long time: namely, that the regime was bound to reply on open criminal activities to save itself, since in any case the apartheid system is itself criminal.
The regime also finds itself compelled to accelerate its already discredited separate development and bantustan programme, changing the language it is using to make this programme appear more attractive, setting up all manner of advisory committees, all intended to salvage the political option that the enemy forced upon us, an option that has been rendered bankrupt by its consistent mass rejection by the people.
The perspective in South Africa is quite clear. It is one of a mounting offensive by the masses of our people waging political, economic and military battles. There is no way in which the enemy can stop this, but we know that the racists will seek to exact a high toll in the lives of our people. All the manoeuvring that he is engaged in is intended to increase his murderous power to slow down our progress to victory. And, yet, our victory is certain.
Mr. Chairman, the support of the socialist countries, like that of certain countries in Western Europe, particularly the Nordic community of States, has been indispensable in ensuring the rapid progress of the South African struggle. The ANC warmly acknowledges their support, as also that of member States of the non-aligned countries and of organisations and peoples in other parts of the world.
The countries of southern Africa - especially those, such as Mozambique, Zambia, Angola and Botswana, that are frequent targets of armed aggression by the Rhodesian and South African fascist regimes - have made enormous sacrifices to ensure victory for the total liberation of southern Africa. They are making these sacrifices daily, and only yesterday and the day before these enemies of freedom and independence have been invading the People's Republic of Mozambique. We vehemently denounce and condemn this banditry. We speak in the certainty of the fact that victory belongs to the people of Mozambique, the people of southern Africa, the peoples organised around the OAU and the Non-Aligned Movement. Mr. Chairman, we reiterate our call for concrete and effective support for all these countries to enable them to implement national development plans while continuing to give full support to the national liberation struggle in Zimbabwe, Namibia and South Africa.
Mr. Chairman, in view of the growing and dangerous threat posed by the apartheid regime to the peace and security of Africa and the world - and what we are experiencing in southern Africa is testimony to this fact - it becomes more urgent for the international community and in particular the non-aligned countries to act decisively to eliminate this threat to mankind. The African National Congress has always maintained that the world community should impose comprehensive sanctions against this regime.
Although these efforts have constantly been blocked and undermined by the Western Powers, some of the countries represented at this Sixth Summit are vigorously implementing the decisions of this body, of the OAU, of the United Nations General Assembly. We should like, once again, to cite the exemplary case of Iran and Nigeria in relation to the oil embargo. It is our hope that the power of this Movement will express itself decisively in the effective isolation of the racist regime and the regimes of southern Africa as a whole and in determined support for the liberation movements fighting these regimes.
We would like to hope that this power will express itself in firm support for the struggles of all peoples fighting colonialism, apartheid, racism, fascism and Zionism. We are confident that, as the struggle continues, it will find assured victory.