Jakarta — Indonesian Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi has encouraged the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) member states to turn the region into a nuclear-free zone soon. “The implementation of the Southeast Asia Nuclear Weapon-Free Zone (SEANWFZ) Treaty is a prerequisite to the creation of a secure and peaceful Southeast Asian region, which will eventually support the prosperity of ASEAN people,” the Foreign Ministry said in a press statement released on Thursday.
She made the remarks during the meeting of the SEANWFZ Commission, which brought together ASEAN foreign ministers in Singapore, on Wednesday. In an effort to create a nuclear weapon-free zone, she stressed the importance of resuming consultations with nuclear weapon states (NWS) to access the protocol of SEANWEZ Treaty, she remarked.
To that end, the Indonesian government has proposed that the ASEAN will be able to empower nuclear experts to bridge the existing differences, she added. The SEANWFZ Treaty cannot be fully put into force unless the nuclear weapon states (NWS) sign its protocol, she explained. For its part, the Indonesian government will always encourage ASEAN to continue its active role in maintaining peace and stability and to ensure comprehensive disarmament of nuclear weapons in the region.