Phnom Penh, Kingdom of Cambodia
4 April 2012

Speaking at the Retreat Session of the 20th ASEAN Summit, President Benigno S. Aquino III called for concerted international action to convince the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPKR) not to push through with its plan to launch a long range missile this month, believing that this action of Korea violates United Nations (UN) Security Council Resolutions 1718 and 1874.

President Aquino said to his ASEAN counterparts that the planned missile launch increases tensions “particularly in the period of uncertainty leading up to the launch – where no one is sure of the trajectory of the missile.” The President also stressed that the situation in the Korean Peninsula has implications on regional stability. He said that “stability, peace and prosperity in our region requires all of us to continue to engage with each other, and the larger international community in ways that build confidence.” He then hopes for the early resumption of the Six-Party Talks and for DPKR to undertake denuclearization.

With regards to the disputes in the West Philippine Sea, President Aquino reiterated the Philippine’s earlier proposal to host a meeting among claimant countries, including China, under the guidance of ASEAN. The proposal aims to come up with a peaceful and diplomatic resolution regarding the issue.

As President Aquino explained, “ASEAN member states should arrive at a common and collective position on the COC before meeting with China to craft a legally-binding code in the West Philippine Sea. It is important that we maintain ASEAN centrality.”

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