United Nations Welcome to the United Nations. It's your world.

Security Council Open Debate on “Maintenance of international peace and security: upholding the UN Charter”

Thursday, 09 January 2020
H.E. MS. KIRA CHRISTIANNE D. AZUCENA, Chargé d’affaires, a.i. Permanent Mission of the Republic of the Philippines to the United Nations
Security Council Chamber, United Nations Head Quarters


Mr. President,


1. I am honored to speak on behalf of the ten Member States of ASEAN.

2. We congratulate Viet Nam, represented today by H.E. Deputy Prime Minister      and Minister of Foreign Affairs Pham Binh Minh, for assuming the presidency of    the UN Security Council. We welcome the presence of ASEAN Member States,    Indonesia and Viet Nam, as non-permanent members of the Council, as we look forward to the further strengthening of the ASEAN-UN Comprehensive Partnership and Cooperation.

3. The relationship between ASEAN and the UN found its roots in its respective Charters. On the one hand, Article 2 of the ASEAN Charter commits ASEAN and its members to uphold the UN Charter and international law. On the other hand, Article 52 of the UN Charter cites the role of regional arrangements or agencies in the maintenance of international peace and security. Cooperation to promote regional and international peace and security is a key feature of the ASEAN-UN Comprehensive Partnership and Cooperation.

4. ASEAN believes that regionalism and multilateralism are important principles and frameworks of cooperation, and that their strength and value lie in their inclusivity, rules-based nature, and emphasis on mutual benefit and respect.

5. We have a shared commitment to maintain and promote peace, security and stability in the region, as well as to the peaceful resolution of disputes, including full respect for legal and diplomatic processes, without resorting to the threat or use of force, in accordance with the universally recognised principles of international law, including the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea.

6. We promote sustainable security in the region by reinforcing strategic trust and mutual confidence within ASEAN and in the wider Asia-Pacific region helped by reaffirming the principles of the Treaty of Amity and Cooperation in Southeast Asia (TAC) as well as its application to this wider region, and on the basis of upholding the UN Charter and international law.

7. We acknowledge the continued contribution of the ASEAN Defence Ministers’ Meeting (ADMM) and the ADMM-Plus in maintaining regional peace and stability. We welcome the defence sectoral’s theme last year on Sustainable Security; towards strengthening, consolidating and optimising defence cooperation; and supporting cross-pillar activities. We are pleased to note further progress in the area of humanitarian assistance and disaster relief, maritime security, peace-keeping operations, counter-terrorism, military medicine, humanitarian mine action and cyber security.

8. Peacekeeping remains the flagship program of the United Nations enterprise. ASEAN-UN collaboration in peace-keeping and post-conflict peace-building, with activities conducted through ASEAN Member States’ national focal points and the ASEAN Peacekeeping Centres Network (APCN), continues to be strengthened. As of July 2019, the ASEAN Member States have contributed approximately 5,500 military and police personnel as well as technical expertise to the UN peace-keeping missions.

9. We have intensified efforts to advance the women, peace and security agenda, including through the provision of a growing number of women peacekeepers and the establishment of the ASEAN Women’s Peace Registry (AWPR), to which the UN Secretary-General reiterated UN’s commitment to providing technical support.

10. ASEAN Cooperation has intensified its efforts on matters related to international terrorism and non-traditional threats, including transnational crime. Representatives from ASEAN Member States and the ASEAN Secretariat have participated in UN sponsored regional workshops and conferences on issues such as counter-terrorism and foreign terrorist fighters, cybercrime, environmental crime, illicit drugs, and human trafficking.

11. ASEAN looks forward to further bolstering its partnership with the United Nations in their shared aspiration “to maintain and enhance peace, security and stability and further strengthen peace-oriented values in the region” and around the world. 


Mr. President,


12. In my national capacity, I wish to highlight the following points:

13. First, as a proud founding member of the UN, the Philippines is firmly committed to international law, as it is an indispensable foundation in our efforts to build a more peaceful, prosperous and just world, with UN member states enjoying territorial integrity and political independence. In promoting respect for international law, all disputes must be settled peacefully in accordance with Article 2 and Chapter Six (VI) of the UN Charter. The 1982 Manila Declaration on the Peaceful Settlement of International Disputes is the authoritative articulation of our collective duty under the UN Charter to peacefully resolve disputes in the international arena.

14.  Second, terrorism, with its links to drug trafficking and organized crime, is a m

ost serious threat to international peace and security. The Philippines supports efforts mandated by the UN Charter on effective collective measures for the prevention and removal of threats to peace. We support the legal instruments we have developed through the years, along with Security Council resolutions, and their effective implementation, to fight and end terrorism.

15. Third, we uphold the primacy of sovereignty and, as enshrined in the UN Charter, the principle of the sovereign equality of all its Members. The UN stands on the foundation of the aggregated sovereignties of its members. It harnesses sovereignties, not for some against others, but to common purposes of peace and productive cooperation. It is also our view that today’s conflicts equally require trust and respect for sovereignty; not a plain assertion of the multilateral over sovereign states. Working against sovereignty undermines the international order; as we have seen when states are made to fail by multilateral action.


Mr. President,


16. I conclude by reaffirming the commitment of the Philippines to upholding the letter and spirit of the UN Charter, as we address with fortitude the persistent threats to world peace.