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Disarmament Diplomacy

Issue No. 48, July 2000

ASEAN Meetings

Note: the 10 members of ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) are - Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Viet Nam. The ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF) consists of the 10 ASEAN member states plus Australia, Canada, China, European Union (EU), India, Japan, South Korea, New Zealand, Russia and the US. The July 27 ARF meeting was also attended, for the first time, by North Korea, plus Mongolia and Papua New Guinea.

ASEAN Ministerial Meeting

Joint Communiqué, 33rd ASEAN Ministerial Meeting, Bangkok, Thailand, July 24-25, 2000

"Political and Security Cooperation

16. The Foreign Ministers welcomed the Progress made in implementing the Treaty on the Southeast Asia Nuclear Weapon-Free Zone (SEANWFZ). They noted with satisfaction the establishment of all the various organs under the Treaty and the work undertaken by these organs, including consultations with the International Atomic Energy Agency.

17. The foreign Ministers urged the Nuclear Weapon States to accede to the Protocol to the SEANWFZ Treaty at an early date. They welcomed the announcement made by China…in Singapore in July 1999 of its readiness to accede to the Protocol, and called on the other nuclear-weapon states to exercise greater flexibility in the consultations on the Protocol. …

Regional and International Issues

26. The Foreign Ministers reaffirmed that peace and stability in the Korean Peninsula was crucial to the security of the region as a whole. They welcomed the Summit between the leaders of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) and the Republic of Korea (ROK) in Pyongyang on June 13-15, 2000, and hoped that the momentum would be carried forward with a view to achieving enduring peace and stability in the Korean Peninsula and reunification of the two countries. They noted with satisfaction the efforts by the DPRK to improve relations with its neighbours, as well as ASEAN member countries, and to enhance its interaction with the wider international community. In this regard, they looked forward to the participation of the DPRK at the 7th ARF in Bangkok on July 26-27, 2000. Further, they continued to express support for the Four-Party Talks and the Korean Peninsula Energy Development Organization (KEDO). …

30. The Foreign Ministers reiterated the importance of achieving universal adherence to the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty and the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. They welcomed the convening of the NPT Review Conference 2000 in New York on April 24-May 19, 2000 and hoped that it would create a momentum towards the implementation of concrete measures on nuclear disarmament by the nuclear-weapon states. In this regard, the Foreign Ministers affirmed the unanimous conclusion of the Advisory Opinion of the International Court of Justice of July 8, 1996 that 'there exists an obligation to pursue in good faith and bring to a conclusion negotiations leading to nuclear disarmament in all its aspects under strict and effective international control.'

31. The Foreign Ministers stressed the importance for all states which had not ratified or acceded to the Chemical Weapons Convention to consider doing so at the earliest opportunity and noted the progress in negotiating a verification Protocol to strengthen the Biological Weapons Convention by the Ad Hoc-Group of the State Parties to the BWC. …"

Source: ASEAN website, http://www.aseansec.org

ARF Meeting

Chairman's Statement (Dr. Surin Pitsuwan, Foreign Minister of Thailand), 7th Meeting of the ASEAN Regional Forum, Bangkok, July 27, 2000.

"3. The Ministers welcomed the participation for the first time of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea…at the Seventh ARF Ministerial Meeting in Bangkok. With regard to the issue of membership, the Ministers reaffirmed the decision taken at the Fifth ARF and agreed that with the current 23 participants, the focus should now be on consolidating the process of dialogue and cooperation among the present participants of the ARF. …

16. The Ministers welcomed the progress regarding the implementation of the [SEANWFZ] Treaty…which contributed towards non-proliferation of nuclear weapons. They welcomed in particular the operation of the Commission for SEANWFZ and the Executive Committee for SEANWFZ, and the dialogue between the State Parties to the Treaty and the International Atomic Energy Agency, as provided for in the Treaty. The Ministers also expressed support for the continued consultations between the State Parties of the SEANWFZ Treaty and the nuclear-weapon states regarding the latter's accession to the Protocol to the Treaty. …

21. The Ministers noted with satisfaction the positive developments on the Korean Peninsula, including the increased dialogue and exchanges between the Democratic People's Republic of Korea and several ARF countries. … In this regard, the Ministers were of the view that the [June DRPK-ROK] Summit represented a turning point in inter-Korean relations, and that the on-going momentum of dialogue and interaction would be carried forward with a view to achieving lasting peace and eventual reunification on the. Korean Peninsula. The Ministers also expressed the hope for further efforts by all parties concerned within the frameworks of inter-Korean dialogue, the US-DPRK and Japan-DPRK talks, the Four-Party Talks and broader international efforts, as well as for further positive developments regarding the temporary moratorium by the DPRK on missile test launches and for the full implementation of the 1994 Agreed Framework, including the work of the Korean Peninsula Energy Development Organization...

22. The Ministers exchanged views on situation in South. Asia and some expressed their continuing concern. The Ministers expressed the hope that efforts be made to bring about positive developments in the region. …

24. The Ministers discussed matters related to proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and their means of delivery, as well as the implications of ballistic missile defence systems, They noted expressions of support for the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. In this regard, they noted the outcome of the NPT Review Conference... The Ministers also took note of the call for all states to sign and ratify the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty and to accede to the NPT and the call made in the NPT Review Conference Final Document on the Conference on Disarmament to agree on a programme of work which includes the immediate commencement of negotiations on the Fissile Material Cut-Off Treaty. The Ministers further emphasized the importance of systematic and progressive efforts by [the] nuclear-weapon states on nuclear disarmament and called on them to work towards the objective of total elimination of nuclear weapons. The Meeting noted further the recent adoption by the Mongolian Parliament of a Law on its Nuclear Weapon-Free Status as an important unilateral measure undertaken by Mongolia in pursuance of the UN General Assembly resolution A/53/77D on 'Mongolia's international security and nuclear weapon-free status'.

25. The Ministers reiterated their support for the work of the Ad Hoc Group of States Parties to the Biological Weapons Convention (BWC) on the negotiations on a verification protocol for the BWC and their call for a speedy conclusion of the said negotiations. …

26. The Ministers discussed issues pertaining to transnational crime, especially issues of piracy, illegal migration, including trafficking in human persons, particularly women and children, and illicit trafficking in small arms. … The Ministers also expressed support for the on-going negotiations on the Convention Against Transnational Organized Crime and its Protocols as well as the convening of the International Conference on the Illicit Trade in Small Arms and Light Weapons in All Its Aspects in 2001. …"

Source: ASEAN website, http://www.aseansec.org

© 2000 The Acronym Institute.

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