SINGAPORE, July 20 (Bernama) — Human rights issues are expected to be the main topic of discussion by Asean Foreign Ministers at the 41st Asean Ministerial Meeting (AMM), which will kick off here tomorrow.
The issues need further deliberation by the 10 member states of the grouping before they can be accepted under the Asean Charter.Apart from this, the discussions will also focus on matters of common interest and concerns to Asean as well as current global developments such as financial, food and energy security.I
In addition, the pertinent issues that would be also discussed are on the follow-up action and coming into force of the ASEAN Charter, strengthening of the ASEAN Secretariat as well as the drafts of the ASEAN Political-Security and ASEAN Socio-Cultural Blueprints.
Foreign Minister Datuk Seri Rais Yatim was quoted earlier as saying that the meeting from Monday till July 24 would concentrate on human rights under the Asean Charter, the definition of human rights, its scope and so on.
The concept of human rights itself is wide and there are a few important questions that need to be answered, he had said.
Rais, who arrived here accompanied by his wife Datin Seri Masnah Rais and senior officials this evening, also stressed that there was a need to include eastern values in the clause.
The minister is leading the Malaysian delegation to the AMM, Post Ministerial Conferences (PMC) and 15th ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF) that will be held here 20-24 July 2008.
The ministers are also expected to review the grouping’s progress and achievement over the past year, in particular the decisions made by their leaders at the 13th Asean Summit held here on Nov 20, 2007.
Themed "One ASEAN at the Heart of Dynamic Asia," the 41st AMM was earlier preceded by the ASEAN Senior Officials Meeting (SOM) as well as the 4th Meeting of the 41st ASEAN Standing Committee (ASC).
The ministers are also scheduled to attend the ASEAN+3 Foreign Ministers Meeting and the PMC with ASEAN’s Dialogue Partners.
Asean groups Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.