Published: Sunday July 8, 2012 MYT 12:07:00 PM
Updated: Sunday July 8, 2012 MYT 1:56:12 PM
Pak Lah presents Asean's approach to world peace
KUALA LUMPUR: Asean could be the best tangible representation of the enduring spirit of cooperation and community needed to achieve world peace, said Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi.
The former prime minister said that although Asean member states have differences, even disputes, and were not always of the same mind from time to time, but their commitment to the association was unwavering and would ensure that any differences would not interfere with the regional common good.
"As with most things, building an organisation takes patience and effort. It is a time-consuming and painstaking exercise.
"But the payoffs are substantial, even invaluable, for it helps to ensure that we have the peace and stability that is essential for development" he said when addressing the World Peace Forum at Tsinghua University in Beijing, China. The text of his speech was made available here.
The two-day forum, themed "Win-win For All: Peace, Security and Cooperation" was officiated by China vice-president Xi Jinping on Sunday.
Abdullah said Asean was not self-centred and concerned only with its own security, but had created conditions for peace beyond the region as well as through its relation with dialogue partners including China, India, Russia and the United States.
"Other bodies, such as the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation also play the vital role of bringing us together to work on issues of mutual interest so that there is no time of inclination to create discord," he said.
Abdullah took the opportunity to commend China for its productive contribution to the cause of world peace for the past three decades, especially with its economic reform and full integration into the international community.
He said by its growing capacity in economic, strategic and politics, China has the responsibility to use the power that comes with it in legitimate and constructive ways.
"China's interest is becoming indistinguishable from that of the international community at large.
"In this regard, by patient engagement and adroit diplomacy at peace, by helping others to remove barriers and develop as it has done itself, China can do a lot to underscore a win-win outcome for all," he said. - Bernama