JOINT STATEMENT OF THE ASEAN CIVIL SOCIETY CONFERENCE/ASEAN PEOPLES’ FORUM (ACSC/APF) 2013
17 April 2013 9:10 pm
6 – 8 April 2013
Jerudong, Brunei Darussalam
We, of more than 300 delegates representing Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) from ASEAN member states, including the host country, working in various fields of peace and security, environment, climate change, food sovereignty, land rights, women, children, youth, human rights, trade union, indigenous people, ethnic minorities, religious minorities, economic development, sexual and reproductive health and rights, migrant workers, HIV, labour, internally displaced persons (IDP), refugees, trafficked persons, persons with disabilities, natural resource governance and extractive industries, from research and advocacy institutions, multi-sectorial organisations representing farm workers and the urban poor, sexual orientation and gender identity (SOGI), the diversity represented being united in our single identity as ASEAN civil society, brought together by the common goal of building a bright and prosperous future for the people of South East Asia, gathered together in BRUNEI DARUSSALAM, for the ASEAN CIVIL SOCIETY CONFERENCE/ASEAN PEOPLES’ FORUM 2013 theme “ASEAN: Building our future together” on 6 to 8 April 2013, hereby reaffirm our commitment to advocating a people-centred ASEAN based on human rights which underpin the three pillars of ASEAN: the socio-cultural community, political security community and economic community, reaffirm our commitment to enhance mutual understanding and building solidarity, unity and cooperation amongst the people of ASEAN in the process of building an ASEAN community, confirm our undertakings to secure mutual understanding in critical engagement between CSOs and governments by fostering a CSO-enabling environment, reiterate our commitment to ensuring that ASEAN upholds the fundamental rights of its people to justice, equity, non-discrimination, equality and human dignity and continues to advocate to uphold the vital principles of democracy, accountability, rule of law, human rights, good governance, the best interest of the child, meaningful, substantive and inclusive people’s participation and their voice in sustainable development in the pursuit of economic, social, gender and environmental justice, so as to facilitate peace, prosperity and progress in the ASEAN region.
In our endeavours to pursue the promotion and creation of a genuinely people-centred ASEAN and the realization of an ASEAN Community, we call upon all relevant authorities of ASEAN to establish a dispute prevention, settlement, reconciliation mechanisms addressing intrastate conflicts and interstate territorial and jurisdictional disputes in South East Asia; act without delay to halt human rights violations in this region, that address the violence against civilians, women and children especially during armed conflict, targeted on the basis of gender, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation and gender identity (SOGI), forced displacement of communities, enforced disappearances, and arbitrary detention of those advocating for human rights, call for 2015 ASEAN Community to be free from all forms of violence against women, youth and children, demand that ASEAN governments establish mechanism and to ensure its effective implementation within ASEAN for meaningful youth participation in decision-making processes, urge ASEAN governments to develop their national strategies which aim to improve the livelihoods and living conditions of their people, with good dignity, in the ASEAN community as reflected in the ASEAN Charter, determine to contribute to the implementation of the ASEAN Community Blueprint and related Roadmaps, ASEAN Connectivity master plan, particularly on people-to-people connectivity, want to monitor public policy action and be ready to contribute experiences and expertise in realising the common goals of ASEAN in the spirit of the constructive engagement and partnership, demand that in developing a future of the ASEAN, people’s voice must be at the centre of its processes, where the most marginalised including children, youth and women have a greater voice in participation and decision-making, call for ASEAN governments to create human rights mechanisms by having ASEAN special rapporteurs to monitor human rights compliance on a national level for reporting to ASEAN human rights bodies and ASEAN governments, call for ASEAN governments to create ASEAN human rights court, urge ASEAN governments that have not yet established national human rights institutions to do so, call for the immediate release of those imprisoned or forcibly disappeared, for attainment of justice for all the victims of extrajudicial killing, torture, sexual violence and other grave human right violations especially against women human right defenders, call upon all ASEAN governments to ratify all the 8 ILO Core Labour Standards, and to include in their domestic laws the elimination of forced labour and child labour and rights to organise collective bargaining, and the stipulation the minimum wage, urge ASEAN to ensure that there is sufficient protection of all workers including migrant workers, irregularly documented and undocumented workers, and women migrant workers, especially when 2015 sees the possible implementation of an open labour market across ASEAN, and call for the inclusion of their right to health and sexual reproductive rights, recognition of domestic work as work by ratifying ILO Convention 189, and the repeal of discriminatory laws and regulations targeting migrant workers, call upon ASEAN governments and other stakeholders for supporting people with disabilities and victims of mass destruction weapons, including Agent Orange, call on ASEAN governments to ratify the Optional Protocol to the Convention of the Rights of the Child (CRC) on a Communications Procedure, urge ASEAN governments to promote genuine democracy where people can decide their own fate and this includes the right to self-determination which is enshrined in international law and human rights, demand a democratic space for people to freely express their views and beliefs, as well as to allow access to information in order to ensure that the voice and concern of all sectors of society will be heard and addressed by ASEAN governments, urge ASEAN governments to ensure that every development project in ASEAN countries must involve public consultation with the people as stipulated under international legal standards and ensure prior and informed consent, demand that a new ASEAN must reduce structural inequalities on wealth, power and resources between and within countries, between rich and poor and between men and women and other genders, call for “environment” to be the fourth pillar of ASEAN, call for ASEAN governments to adopt a framework on natural resource governance which accommodates the following principles: human rights protection, human security, human development, promotion of environmental sustainable development, equality of revenue sharing and transparency and accountability by adopting Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI), call for ASEAN governments to adopt a climate change framework, which follows the principles of climate justice and equity, taking into consideration gender equality and human rights, and in consultation with marginalised communities and CSOs, particularly indigenous people, women, peasants, farmers and fisherfolk, encourage all ASEAN governments to ensure that environmental and social impact be addressed in a just and prompt manner, demand ASEAN governments to work in partnership with youth groups to design and implement educational and preventive programmes including measures to stop the production and manufacturing of illicit drugs, highly appreciate the endeavours of the Council of Women of Brunei Darussalam as the lead CSO together with local, regional and national CSOs in organising this Conference which has successfully facilitated and ensured lively robust discussions and a vote of thanks to the excellent hospitality provided.
We hereby present this Joint Statement of the ASEAN Civil Society Conference/ASEAN Peoples’ Forum 2013 of key issues and recommendations to the 22nd ASEAN Summit in Brunei Darussalam and to the relevant authorities and bodies.
(Adopted by the Members of the Regional Steering Committee of ACSC/APF 2013 on Monday, 8 April 2013, at 5.10pm, Jerudong, Brunei Darussalam),
Reference Papers arising from ACSC/APF 2013 will be compiled and sent later to the Regional Steering Committee Members and Focal Points for further information and consideration in their next plan of action