ASEAN joint communique on South China Sea conflict to be released soon


Jakarta (ANTARA News) – Foreign Ministers of 10 ASEAN member states have finally agreed to issue a joint communique on the South China Sea conflict, after Indonesian Foreign Minister Marty Natalegawa made a series of visits to four ASEAN countries.

Foreign Ministry spokesperson Michael Tene told reporters here on Friday that the joint communique would be based on several basic principles relating to ASEAN`s stance on the South China Sea dispute.

“The joint communique, which will be issued soon, is based on `all-weather` principles. That means it will be applicable in any given situation,” he said.

Marty went to the Philippines, Vietnam, Cambodia, and Singapore to meet with his counterparts, in the wake of the failure of ASEAN Ministerial Meeting participants to issue a joint statement on the South China Sea issue. In the course of his two-day trip, Marty also phoned his counterparts from other ASEAN countries, urging them to issue a joint statement.

“The aim is to improve communication and find common ground on South China Sea. I hope my counterparts will express their views,” he said before leaving for Manila.

The Indonesian government expressed hope that the joint communique would be issued successfully, particularly because the country would then be considered to be instrumental in bringing peace to the region.

“The key points outlined in the joint statement include full implementation of the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties; guidelines for the implementation of the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties; early conclusion of a regional code of conduct; full respect for the universally recognized principles of international law; implementing self-restraint and non-use of force by all parties; and ensuring the peaceful resolution of disputes in accordance with The United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, 1982,” Michael said. (*)


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