JAKARTA, Jul 12, 2023 - (ACN Newswire) - Indonesia has urged ASEAN member states to preserve the Southeast Asia Region as a nuclear-weapon-free zone and not abandon human rights issues, and reaffirms its readiness to cooperate in reaching significant human rights promotion and protection efforts.
"We will continue the communication with each other, but I emphasize that we have a very strong political will to maintain Southeast Asia as a nuclear-free region," Indonesian Foreign Affairs Minister Retno Marsudi said during the sidelines of the 56th ASEAN Foreign Ministers' Meeting (AMM) in Jakarta on Tuesday.
Marsudi has led the Commission of the Southeast Asia Nuclear-Weapon-Free Zone (SEANWFZ) meeting. The SEANWFZ had contributed to the collective efforts in maintaining the region's peace and stability through global disarmament and non-proliferation regime.
However, Indonesia regretted that none of the nuclear weapon states had signed the protocol to the SEANWFZ Treaty, which was inked by ASEAN member states 25 years ago. The protocol was formulated to invite the five nuclear powers -- China, Russia, France, the United Kingdom, and the United States -- to join the efforts to realize Southeast Asia as a region free of nuclear weapons.
During the SEANWFZ meeting, the Commission plans to task negotiators to examine the treaty body due to some objections to some sentences. Thus, the ASEAN member states must cooperate to achieve the region's peace and stability without nuclear weapons. "We must come as a united front before the nuclear weapon states. (It is) only then we can forge a clearer path toward a region free of nuclear weapons," Marsudi said.
Additionally, during the 56th ASEAN Foreign Ministers' Meeting (AMM) with representatives of the ASEAN Intergovernmental Commission on Human Rights (AICHR), Indonesia stated that differences between ASEAN member countries should not become an excuse for abandoning Southeast Asia's human rights issues.
The Indonesian foreign minister noted that dialogue on human rights should be conducted regularly. "We are, therefore, aiming for a Leaders' Declaration on the ASEAN Human Rights Dialogue," Marsudi said. ASEAN could set an example of its values in prioritizing constructive engagements amid global crises and rivalries that worsen human rights.
The AICHR should continue to work beyond capacity-building activities and results in impactful homegrown initiatives, as well as continue to promote human rights values in accordance with the regional context and voice the promotion and protection of human rights that are constructive, objective, and proportional in the three pillars of the ASEAN Community.
Indonesia reaffirms its readiness to cooperate in reaching significant human rights promotion and protection efforts.
The series of ASEAN Foreign Ministers' Meeting (AMM) events are being held in Jakarta from July 10 to July 14, 2023. The events comprise 18 meetings, including the Southeast Asia Nuclear-Weapon-Free Zone (SEANWFZ) meeting, the ASEAN Intergovernmental Commission on Human Rights (AICHR) meeting, the AMM plenary session, and a retreat session, as well as meetings with ASEAN's dialogue partners.
Yashinta Difa, Raka Adji, Editor: Azis Kurmala (c) ANTARA 2023
Image: [L-R] Minister of Foreign Affairs of Malaysia Zambry Abdul Kadir, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Philippines Enrique Manalo, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Singapore Vivian Balakrishnan, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Thailand Don Pramudwinai, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Vietnam Bui Thanh Son, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Indonesia Retno Marsudi, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Laos Saleumxay Kommasith, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Brunei Darussalam Erywan Pehin Yusof, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Cambodia Prak Sokhonn, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Timor Leste Bendito dos Santos Freitas, and the General Secretary of ASEAN Kao Kim Hourn take a group picture before the Meeting of the Commission of the Southeast Asia Nuclear-Weapon-Free Zone (SEANWFZ) in Jakarta, Tuesday (11/7/2023). (ANTARA FOTO/Indrianto Eko Suwarso/YU/cfo) (https://photos.acnnewswire.com/20230712.ASEAN.jpg)
Copyright 2023 ACN Newswire. All rights reserved. www.acnnewswire.com