News from the Archive
10 September 2006, ASEM 6, Press release
Chairman's Press Remarks 1 - Strengthening multilateralism and addressing security threats
The discussions of the first closed session, chaired by Mr Matti Vanhanen, Prime Minister of Finland, focussed on multilateralism and traditional as well as non-traditional security challenges. Throughout the session, emphasis was placed on strong support for the rules-based multilateral system with the United Nations at its centre.
The leaders stressed that commitment to promote peace and security, sustainable development and human rights, in accordance with the UN Charter and international law, is still one of the most important guiding principles of the ASEM partnership. Concrete ASEM initiatives were highlighted as a tool to enhance political dialogue and cooperation.
While discussing the role of the UN, the leaders strongly emphasised the necessity of the continued implementation of the reforms, which were agreed upon at the 2005 UN World Summit. In this context, they brought up the importance of the new Human Rights Council and Peacebuilding Commission. The leaders furthermore pointed out the importance of achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), concentrating especially on poverty reduction, and sustainable development.
Recognising the current challenges in their respective regions, the ASEM partners emphasised the need to work together to find solutions to a broad range of security challenges. The leaders stressed the continued importance of multilateral efforts and treaties in the area of disarmament and the non-proliferation of weapons of mass destruction.
The ASEM partners noted, in the light of recent events, that the fight against transnational terrorism requires a multilateral approach, international cooperation, as well as cooperation between civilisations. They stressed that counter-terrorism strategies comprise a broad range of measures, such as countering radicalisation, preventing financing of terrorism and promoting interfaith dialogue, and welcomed the ongoing ASEM cooperation on counter-terrorism. ASEM can be instrumental in achieving tangible progress in tackling various forms of organised crime such as money-laundering, drugs-trafficking, illicit arms trade, human trafficking, as well as terrorism financing and corruption.
Avian influenza, HIV/Aids and other communicable diseases are global threats that recognise no national boundaries and also have severe social and economic effects. These human security threats require common solutions. In this context the partners noted the crucial importance of honouring the commitments made at international pledging conferences. The partners furthermore welcomed the concrete actions in the area of health issues within the ASEM framework. They suggested further international cooperation in exchanging information, pooling resources, promoting international networking, and joining forces to prevent the spread of HIV/Aids and other pandemics.
After the closure of the session, leaders met with representatives of the 10th Asia-Europe Business Forum at a reception.
Back to September 2006
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