ASEAN opens first FM meeting after Charter takes effect
www.chinaview.cn 2009-07-20 12:09:51   Print

of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Secretary-General Surin Pitsuwan (L) and Thai Foreign Minister Kasit Piromya attend a press conference in Phuket, Thailand, on July 20, 2009. The 42nd ASEAN Foreign Ministers Meeting concluded here Monday.

of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Secretary-General Surin Pitsuwan (L) and Thai Foreign Minister Kasit Piromya attend a press conference in Phuket, Thailand, on July 20, 2009. The 42nd ASEAN Foreign Ministers Meeting concluded here Monday. (Xinhua/Liu Lianfen)
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  PHUKET, Thailand, July 20 (Xinhua) -- The Association of Southeast Asia Nations (ASEAN) opened here Monday the 42nd ASEAN Ministerial Meeting (AMM), the first of its kind after the Charter of the ten-member organization took effect last year.

    In his address at the opening ceremony, Thai Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva underlined the need for ASEAN Member States to fully translate the spirit and letters of the ASEAN Charter into concrete actions with a view to realizing an ASEAN Community by 2015.
Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Secretary-General Surin Pitsuwan (L) and Thai Foreign Minister Kasit Piromya attend a press conference in Phuket, Thailand, on July 20, 2009. The 42nd ASEAN Foreign Ministers Meeting concluded here Monday.

Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Secretary-General Surin Pitsuwan (L) and Thai Foreign Minister Kasit Piromya attend a press conference in Phuket, Thailand, on July 20, 2009. The 42nd ASEAN Foreign Ministers Meeting concluded here Monday. (Xinhua/Liu Lianfen)
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    The prime minister also emphasized that cooperation with ASEAN Dialogue Partners should be further strengthened to respond to challenges including the impact of the global economic and financial crisis, environmental and natural disaster as well as potential pandemics and other security issues.

    "We have proven our resilience time and again and are on our way to building a Community that will be more competitive, relevant and caring for our peoples," Abhisit said.

    The ministers will focus their discussions on human right issue and dispute settlement mechanism (DSM) among ASEAN nations.

    "To protect our peoples, we are also 'on track and on time' to launch an ASEAN human rights body at the upcoming Summit in October. I am pleased to learn that the draft Terms of Reference of the ASEAN human rights body has been finalized by the ASEAN Foreign Ministers yesterday," said Abhisit.

    The foreign ministers on Sunday proposed the body be named "ASEAN Inter-Governmental Commission on Human Rights" and it will comprise one representative appointed by each ASEAN member country serving a three-year term.

    The ASEAN groups Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.

Editor: An
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