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Six Point Principles, ASEAN’s Consensus on South China Sea

Tuesday, 24 July 2012

ASEAN finally voiced its joint stance on the South China Sea. This is mirrored in a joint statement by Foreign Ministers of ASEAN countries which contains ASEAN’s Six-Point Principles on the South China Sea. This joint statement was issued by the Cambodian Foreign Minister acting as the Chair of ASEAN 2012 on Friday (20/07).

It is the sweet fruit of labor resulted from shuttle diplomacy that FM Marty had been torching around the Philippines, Vietnam, Cambodia and Singapore. Such a central role played by Indonesia is indispensible to this ASEAN’s joint statement.

The ASEAN’s Six-Point Principles on the South China Sea generally explains that the Southeast Asian countries have reaffirmed the declaration of conduct (DoC) on the South China Sea. In addition, these ten ASEAN countries have also reaffirmed the code of conduct.

The next point of the statement conveys the urgency of finishing the discussion on the code of conduct (CoC) and a commitment to recognize the prevailing international laws, which is the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) 1982. Moreover, Foreign Ministers of ASEAN also agreed to prohibit the use of violence and endorse peaceful resolution under the UNCLOS 1982.

The ASEAN’s six point principles in specific are as follows:

 

STATEMENT of ASEAN Foreign Ministers

on ASEAN’s Six-Point Principles

on the South China Sea

 

ASEAN Foreign Ministers reiterate and reaffirm the commitment of ASEAN Member States to:

1.     the full implementation of the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea (2002);

2.     the Guidelines for the Implementation of the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea (2011);

3.     the early conclusion of a Regional Code of Conduct in the South China Sea;

4.     the full respect of the universally recognized principles of International Law, including the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS);

5.     the continued exercise of self-restraint and non-use of force by all parties; and

6.     the peaceful resolution of disputes, in accordance with universally recognized principles of International Law, including the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS).

The ASEAN Foreign Ministers resolve to intensify ASEAN consultations in the advancement of the above principles, consistent with the Treaty of Amity and Cooperation in Southeast Asia (1976) and the ASEAN Charter (2008). (Source: Directorate of Information and Media/PLE/PY/Nik)



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