Friday, December 11, 2009


Jakarta, Dec 11, 2009 (ANTARA) - The fourth Plenary Session of the Asian Parliamentary Assembly (APA) in Bandung in its declaration and resolutions has spotlighted crucial issues such as nuclear, Palestine, and corruption.

All countries have the right to have nuclear technology for peaceful purposes, APA emphasized in its declaration issued at the close of its meeting held in Bandung, West Java Province, Thursday (Dec. 10).

The use of nuclear technology by several countries for peaceful purposes and for their peoples` welfare was a proposal from the Iranian delegation at the APA plenary session.

The Iranian proposal was passed after heated debate among APA members a day earlier. The Chinese delegation, for instance, had requested all participants to seriously consider a recommendation of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) which asked Iran to stop its uranium enrichment program.

The Palestinian delegation, however, fully supported the Iranian proposal. The North Korean parliamentarian delegation viewed that the Iran-proposed nuclear use was not meant for mass destruction through the nuclear energy development, but for increasing a bargaining position of a country politically in the eyes of other countries.

Another point of the Bandung declaration was on the ongoing Copenhagen Summit on Climate Change which was expected to reach a new agreement to replace the Kyoto Protocol.

President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono when officially opening the plenary session in Bandung, Dec. 8, expressed hope that the Asian Parliamentary Assembly (APA) would support the ongoing United Nations Conference on Climate Change in Copenhagen from Dec 7-18, 2009.

Yudhoyono asserted the Copenhagen conference should yield a global consensus which is more effective than the Kyoto Protocol to reduce green house gas emission.

"Remember that a Copenhagen agreement will have a direct relation with the future of the human race on Earth," President Yudhoyono said.

According to the head of state no country in the world would be able to deal with all problems, including climate change, by itself.

APA also called on Asian countries to implement a sustainable development policy in order to improve the environment, and promote the economic growth, democracy, peace, justice and stability in Asia.

The Asian parliaments have also viewed corruption as very serious problem in the national and international levels.

Therefore, APA in the Bandung Declaration urged is member countries to demonstrate commitment to preventing corruption as it had been elaborated in APA`s Resolution on Corruption Eradication in Asia in 2008.

APA President Marzuki Alie in his remarks on the International Anti-Corruption Day commemoration on December 9, emphasized crucial principles for fighting corruption such as transparency, accountability, participative and equal rights.

"Corruption is considered an extraordinary crime because it is causing extensive damage in the community, state, and country, and undermines national development," he said.

The Declaration also urged APA member countries to promote active participation of Asian women in politic, and decision making process in legislation and other policies.

The 15-point Bandung Declaration signed by all participating delegations, also emphasized the importance of democracy promotion in the Asian region for the sake of the region`s welfare, peace and justice.

The plenary session`s last day meeting had to be adjourned when discussing the adoption of APA`s Resolution on Palestine because South Korea, Singapore and Russia disagreed on the draft resolution wordings.

However, the resolution was finally adopted after including reservations from the three countries.

APA President Marzuki Alie earlier expressed concern over the lack of unity and solidarity among Arab countries towards the Palestinian struggle for independence.

"The Palestinian issue is not a big problem if Arab countries are willing to be united," Marzuki, who is also Indonesia`s House Speaker, said after receiving a Palestinian Parliamentary delegate M Tasyir Quba`a in Bandung, West Java, on Wednesday.

During their meeting, Palestinian delegate Tasyir Quba`a extended his country`s gratitude to the Indonesian government and people for their sincere support for the Palestinian people.

He hoped that APA could play more important role in strengthening the Palestinian struggle for its independence through diplomacy.

APA has seen that there has been global injustice and double standard in dealing with the Palestinian struggle against Israeli occupation. All parties must help Palestine get its independence, which is basic human rights.

The Fourth plenary session also issued a recommendation on "Promoting Interfaith and Intercultural Dialog: The Roles of Parliaments in Preventing Terrorism" initiated by the Indonesian House of Representatives (DPR RI).

At least 174 delegates from 27 member countries of APA, four observer countries and three parliamentary organizations in Asia are participating in the APA Plenary Session.

The plenary session was also attended by representatives of three observer organizations, namely the Arab Inter-Parliamentary Union (AIPU), the Parliamentary Union of OIC Member States (PUIC) and the International Parliamentary Assembly of the Eurasian Economic Community.

Representatives of Friedrich-Naumann-Stiftung Fur Die Freiheit, Hanns Seidel Foundation`s Manila office, and Latin American parliament were also present as special guests.

The Plenary Session`s theme was "The Role of Asian Parliaments in Strengthening Democracy Toward Peace, Welfare and Justice in the Asian Region."

DPR has held the APA presidency since last year and had organized the APA`s Third Plenary Session in Jakarta in 2008.

APA was born out of the Association of Asian Parliaments for Peace (AAPP) in November, 2006, in Tehran. The establishment of the AAPP goes back to 1999 when a group of Asian parliamentarians decided to join forces toward promoting peace and human rights in Asia.

APA at its Bandung meeting also officially admitted India and Kazakhstan into its membership. With the inclusion of India and Kazakhstan, APA now has 41 parliaments as members, 18 parliaments and three parliamentary organizations as observers.

The fifth plenary session will be held in Syria, while Cambodia and Russia expressed their intention to host the sixth session.



(T.F001/A/F001/A/A014) 11-12-2009 17:37:39

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