10 August 2014
New Straits Times
BANGKOK : More needs to be done to ensure that all remains from the Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 in Donetsk Oblast may be gathered and repatriated as soon as possible and in a dignified manner, according to ASEAN.
ASEAN demanded all military activities, including by armed groups, be halted in the immediate and surrounding crash site to allow safe and unimpeded access to the site by the international investigation team probing the cause of the crash.
In a joint communiqué after a recent ASEAN Foreign Ministers Meeting in Nay Pyi Taw, Myanmar, ASEAN Foreign Ministers also further demanded that those responsible for the heinous act be held to account and swiftly brought to justice.
They also expressed support for the peaceful efforts taken by all parties to resolve the situation in Ukraine.
They underlined the urgent need to ease tensions in Eastern Ukraine, and for all parties to agree on an immediate, genuine and sustainable ceasefire.
“We urge all concerned parties to come together to negotiate a resolution peacefully in accordance with international law,” they said.
They recalled the joint statement issued on July 19, condemning the downing of MH17 in Donetsk Oblast, Ukraine, on July 17, which killed 298 people.
ASEAN Foreign Ministers also expressed serious concern over recent developments which had increased tensions in the South China Sea and reaffirmed the importance of maintaining peace, stability, maritime security as well as freedom of navigation in and over-flight above the South China Sea.
They urged all parties concerned to exercise self-restraint and avoid actions that would complicate the situation and undermine peace, stability and security in the South China Sea and to settle disputes through peaceful means, without resorting to the threat or use of force, including friendly dialogue, consultations and negotiations, in accordance with universally recognised principles of international law, including the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea.
They took note of the Progress Report on the Implementation of the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea to be submitted to the ASEAN-China Post-Ministerial Conference, and tasked officials to work with China to finalise the objective and structure and elaborate the substance of the Code Of Conduct, including concrete elements which would promote trust and confidence, prevent incidents, manage incidents should they occur.
They also tasked officials to work on a series of early-harvest measures.
ASEAN Foreign Ministers Full Statement