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Statement by H.E. Ambassador Le Hoai Trung Permanent Representative of the Socialist Republic of Viet Nam on behalf of Member States of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations at the Security Council Open Debate on Women, Peace and Security April 17, 2
05-14-2013, 04:32 pm


by H.E. Ambassador Le Hoai Trung

Permanent Representative of the Socialist Republic of Viet Nam

on behalf of Member States of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations

at the Security Council Open Debate on Women, Peace and Security

April 17, 2013


Mr. President,

It gives me great honour and privilege to speak 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 my own country Viet Nam.

At the outset, we would like to thank you, Mr. President, for convening today’s debate on important issue of women, peace and security. We would also like to thank the Secretary-General for his comprehensive report contained in document S/2013/149 which provides a useful basis for our deliberation. We extend our sincere appreciation to the Special Representative for Sexual Violence in Conflict and Under-Secretary-General for peacekeeping for their comprehensive briefings.

Mr. President,

Sexual violence in armed conflict is not a new phenomenon and has occurred in several corners of the world. Sexual violence in armed conflict has  harmful and lasting economic, social, cultural and health consequences for victims, families, and communities, even after conflict has ended. We are deeply concerned about the dire plight of women and girls in situations of armed conflict. We condemn all violence against women in armed conflicts, including sexual violence. We recognize the urgent need to address their plight.

Mr. President,

The ASEAN Member States wish to reiterate our strong commitment to working closely with the international community and the United Nations in ending sexual violence wherever it occurs, and have been supportive of efforts to eliminate and prevent all acts of violence against women. ASEAN attaches great importance to the implementation of the landmark resolution 1325 (2000) and the subsequent resolutions 1820 (2008), 1888 (2009), 1889 (2009) and 1960 (2010). ASEAN supports the continued efforts of Special Representative for Sexual Violence in Conflict and relevant United Nations bodies to advance the women, peace and security agenda in accordance with their respective mandates.

At national and regional levels, ASEAN Member States have been establishing legal and policy frameworks and implementing mechanisms to further enhance the status and welfare of women and girls and to eliminate all forms of violence against women, including sexual violence. These efforts are strengthened with the adoption of, among many others, the Declaration on the Advancement of Women in ASEAN in 1988, the Declaration on the Elimination of Violence against Women in the ASEAN Region in 2004 and the ASEAN Declaration of Human Rights in 2012. ASEAN also established the ASEAN Committee on Women in 2002 and the ASEAN Intergovernmental Commission on Human Rights and the ASEAN Commission on the Promotion and Protection of Women and Children (ACWC) in 2009, which aim to uphold, promote, protect, respect and fulfill the human rights and fundamental freedoms of women and children in the ASEAN.

In this context, Mr. President, ASEAN Member States would like to underline the followings:

Firstly, the fundamental causes of sexual violence in armed conflict should be tackled at its root. A preventive mechanism which addresses the root causes of armed conflict should be implemented. ASEAN’s Treaty of Amity and Cooperation, which aims to promote perpetual peace, everlasting amity and cooperation among their people, is a regional framework which we have put in place to do so. These root causes should be addressed through, inter-alia, promoting the rule of law, good governance, democracy, poverty eradication, sustainable development , respect for and protection of human rights, and providing multi-sectoral assistance and services to the specific needs of women and girls.

Secondly, preventing and eradicating sexual violence against women is closely linked to women’s empowerment, and gender equality. ASEAN views women as agents of change who should participate in full and equal part in peace, conflict resolution, peace-building and post-conflict processes. In this regard, continued efforts by the international community to address sexual violence in armed conflict must be supported. Most recently, the 57th session of the Commission on the Status of Women adopted Agreed Conclusion on the elimination of violence against women and girls. This was widely hailed by governments, UN officials and civil society as a huge step forward and a historic global agreement in the on-going efforts to protect women and girls from violence.

Thirdly, ASEAN Member Countries are of the view that the States must bear responsibility and exert their utmost in preventing and addressing sexual violence in armed conflict. The United Nations and international community can play their supporting roles by providing assistance and sharing their best experiences and best practices to help States to exercise that responsibility.          

Let me conclude, Mr. President, by stressing ASEAN’s readiness and commitment to join efforts with the international community to ensure the elimination of sexual violence in armed conflict, and implement effective measures of accountability and redress in the field of women and peace and security.

I thank you.


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