ASEAN leaders reaffirm importance of bloc’ centrality and unity
18:45 | 29/04/2018
VGP – Leaders of ten ASEAN member States have reaffirmed the importance of maintaining ASEAN centrality and unity in their community-building efforts and engagement of external partners at the 32nd ASEAN Summit in Singapore.

From left to right: Tun Musa Hitam (Malaysia), U Win Myint (Myanmar), Rodrigo Roa Duterte (Philippines), Nguyen Xuan Phuc (Viet Nam), Lee Hsien Loong (Singapore), Prayut Chan-o-cha (Thailand), Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah (Brunei), Samdech Hun Sen (Cambodia), Joko Widodo (Indonesia), Thongloun Sisoulith (Laos) [Photo credit: ASEAN2018 Organising Committee]

The leaders welcomed initiatives that reinforce an ASEAN-centric regional architecture that is open, inclusive and rules-based and these initiatives will build upon ASEAN-led mechanisms, including ASEAN Plus One, ASEAN Plus Three, East Asia Summit, ASEAN Regional Forum, and ASEAN Defense Ministers’ Meeting (ADMM) Plus.

The regional leaders also reaffirmed their shared commitment to maintaining and promoting peace, security, and stability in the region as well as to the peaceful solution of disputes including full respect for legal and diplomatic processes, without resorting to the threat or use of force, in accordance with the universally recognized principles of international law, including the 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea.

They underscored the importance of the ADMM and ADMM Plus as key components of the region’s security architecture, which provide platforms for strategic dialogue and practical cooperation for the defense sector.

The leaders welcomed the Inter-Korean Summit on April 27, 2018, the recent visit of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) leader Kim Jong-un to China, the announcement of plans for a meeting between US President Donald Trump and DPRK leader Kim in the near future, as well as efforts by the Republic of Korea and all concerned parties to reduce tensions and work towards a peaceful resolution of the situation on the Korean peninsula.

According to PM Lee Hsien Loong, ASEAN leaders had "focused and productive" meetings while he chaired a press conference following the 32nd Summit.

During the 32nd ASEAN Summit, the leaders adopted three key documents, namely ASEAN Leaders’ Vision for a Resilient and Innovative ASEAN, ASEAN Leaders’ Statement on Cybersecurity Cooperation, and Concept Note of ASEAN Smart Cities Network.

Earlier, ASEAN foreign ministers adopted Statement on Developments in the Korean Peninsula, which welcomes the Inter-Korean Summit of 27 April 2018, as well as the announcement of plans for a meeting between US President Donald Trump and Democratic People’s Republic of Korea leader Kim Jong Un in the near future.

They regional foreign ministers on April 24 issued a Statement on theSituation in Syria, in which they condemn in the strongest possible terms the use of chemical weapons by any party under any circumstances as this constitutes a serious violation of international law./.

By Quang Minh

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