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Statement by Ambassador Hoang Chi Trung on behalf of ASEAN on Agenda Item 83: “The Rule of Law at National and International Levels”
10-14-2009, 10:06 am

Statement by Ambassador Hoang Chi Trung, Deputy Permanent Representative of Viet Nam to the United Nations on behalf of ASEAN at the Sixth Committee of the 64th Session of the UNGA on Agenda Item 83: “The Rule of Law at National and International Levels”

14 October 2009


Mr. Chairman,


            I have the honor to address the Committee on behalf of the ten Member States of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations or ASEAN, namely Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Lao People's Democratic Republic, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Viet Nam.


            At the outset, ASEAN would like to express its appreciation to the Secretary-General for his first annual report on strengthening and coordinating United Nations rule of law activities contained in document A/64/298. The report provides a comprehensive reference of key UN achievements and its approach in advancing and strengthening the rule of law at both national and international levels in many parts of the world. 


            ASEAN shares the conviction that respect for the rule of law at all levels is essential for the maintenance of international peace and security, as well as the advancement of socioeconomic development.


Mr. Chairman,


            ASEAN has turned a new chapter in the history of the organization with the entry into force of the ASEAN Charter in December 2008. The Charter reaffirmed the commitment of all ASEAN Member States to internationally recognized principles as contained in declarations, agreements, conventions, concords, treaties and other legal instruments of the organization. Among the 14 principles highlighted in the ASEAN Charter are adherence to the rule of law, good governance, the principles of democracy and constitutional government and upholding the United Nations Charter and international law. The Charter also conferred on the organization a legal personality.


            The ASEAN Charter envisaged the transformation of an association of ten Southeast Asian Nations into a truly rules-based, people-centered and closely integrated ASEAN Community by 2015. The ASEAN Community would be based on three pillars: the political and security community, the economic community and the socio-cultural community.


To be truly rules-based, all ASEAN Member States have committed to promoting the implementation of their obligations under international treaties to which they are parties to and to ensuring a more effective enforcement of agreements within ASEAN. We have been working continuously to develop and strengthen institutional and legal frameworks of the organization as envisaged in the Charter, including the establishment of a dispute settlement mechanism in the region.


            To be people-centered and demonstrate collective commitment to good governance, ASEAN is moving forward with the establishment of the ASEAN Intergovernmental Commission on Human Rights (AICHR). At the recent meeting of ASEAN Foreign Ministers in Phuket, Thailand, in July, the Ministers adopted the Terms of Reference for the AICHR. The Commission is scheduled to be officially established at the 15th ASEAN Summit to be held in Cha Am – Hua Hin, Thailand at the end of this month. The establishment of the AICHR would be the first step in an evolving process to advance the cause of human rights in Southeast Asia.


Mr. Chairman,


            ASEAN is committed to realizing a community of Southeast Asian nations that is grounded upon a commitment to the rule of law at national, regional and international levels. We believe that a rules-based, people-centered and more integrated ASEAN would allow us to play a greater role in the advancement of Southeast Asia, as well as to be an even more effective partner of the United Nations and countries outside the region.


Thank you.


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