by H.E. Mr. Le Hoai Trung
Permanent Representative of the Socialist
Republic of Viet Nam
on behalf of the Member States of the
Association of Southeast Asian Nations
at the Security Council Open Debate on Women,
Peace and Security
have the honor to speak on behalf of the ten member states of the Association
of Southeast Asian Nations – ASEAN, namely Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia,
Indonesia, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Malaysia, Myanmar, the
Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and my own country Viet Nam.
We commend the
Nigerian presidency for convening today’s open debate on “Women, Peace and
Security” with focus on sexual violence in armed conflict. We thank the
Secretary General and his Special Representative for their report and briefings
to the Council.
violence in both armed conflict and post-conflict situations continues to
affect and threaten the well-being of women and girls in many regions of the
sexual violence in armed conflict and post conflict situation leaves lasting scars
for nations, communities and, above all, its victims, and may have significant
bearing on the durability of peace and prospects for sustainable development.
strongly condemns all forms of violence against women and girls, in particular sexual
violence. We condemn the use of rape and other sexual violence as a tactic of
war to deliberately target civilian populations. ASEAN therefore welcomes the
important actions taken by this Council to address this atrocious crime,
including its landmark resolutions 1325 (2000), as well as subsequent relevant resolutions and
actions, together with enormous efforts by the entire United Nations and the
international community, have helped raise awareness about the catastrophic
impacts of sexual violence in armed conflict and post conflict situations, which need to be addressed in a
connection, ASEAN is of the view that the international community, with the
United Nations at the center, must double its efforts to address the three inter-related
dimensions – namely, prevention of sexual violence, care for its victims and empowerment
prevention of armed conflict-related sexual violence must be addressed at its
root cause, that is prevention of armed conflicts itself. Mechanisms for
conflict prevention and resolution must be implemented. States must promote the rule of law, justice, good
governance, democracy, poverty eradication, sustainable development, gender
equality and respect for and protection of human rights at national and
international levels, as means to tackle the root causes of conflicts.
Secondly, breaking the silence and raising awareness are essential to
the prevention of sexual violence and protection of victims. Political
discussion and initiatives at international and regional levels are of crucial
importance to send the message of intolerance toward sexual violence, and this must
be combined with measures aimed at raising awareness at grass-roots level. Therefore,
eliminating sexual violence requires not only
sanctioning perpetrators, but transforming the mindset of societies and the
underlying economic and social conditions that allow sexual violence to thrive.
Thirdly, victims of sexual violence must be provided with multi-sectoral assistance and
services tailored to their specific needs. They must be protected against
stigmatization and exclusion, and given the opportunity and capability to
re-engage and re-integrate with their communities.
full and equal political, social and economic participation of women is key
to addressing sexual violence at its roots. The inclusion of women and their
priorities in all aspects of the peace process is crucial. Attention should
also be paid to both civilian women and those having served in armed forces or
been involved in military activities during their reintegration efforts.
Lastly, while States bear the primary
responsibility of preventing and addressing conflict-related sexual violence, the UN system
has a special role to play, as mandated by its member States. ASEAN recognizes
the constructive role of civil society, the media and other stakeholders, many
of whom are working hard to protect the rights and interests of the women under
difficult situation, and encourages them to work closely with States and the UN
system in these common endeavors.
ASEAN is a region where women have a long
tradition of playing an important role in national economic and political life,
during conflicts, in conflict resolution as well as in post-conflict national
strongly committed to the prevention and fight against sexual violence,
particularly sexual violence in armed conflict. All ASEAN Member States are parties to the Convention
on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) and
have supported all relevant Security Council resolutions and presidential
statements related to women, peace and security, including those on sexual
violence in the context of armed conflict.
At the regional level, ASEAN have established
the ASEAN Intergovernmental Commission of Human Rights and the ASEAN Commission
on the Promotion and Protection of the Rights of Women and Children.
“Stop Violence Against Women” and Workshops on Women, Security
and Peace in ASEAN are also important steps taken by ASEAN to raise awareness
on the issue.
Much remains to
be done to address the challenges faced by women and girls in armed conflicts,
as well as post-conflict situations. ASEAN reaffirms our strong support and
commitment to the implementation of relevant Security Council resolutions to end
sexual violence whenever and wherever it occurs.
I thank you.