JAKARTA — A solemn ceremony was held in Jakarta, Indonesia yesterday to mark the 45th founding anniversary of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).
|Secretary General of ASEAN, Surin Pitsuwan (right), the Foreign Minister of Indonesia, Marty Natalegawa (left), and the permanent representative of the kingdom of Cambodia to ASEAN, Kan Pharidh, release balloons to mark the 45th anniversary of ASEAN in Jakarta. — AFP/VNA Photo
Attending the event were ASEAN Secretary-General Surin Pitsuwan, Indonesian Foreign Minister Marty Natalegawa and representatives of ASEAN members and partner countries.
The celebration opened with an ASEAN flag raising ceremony in the melody of the ASEAN anthem performed by Indonesian artists.
Delivering an opening speech, the ASEAN Secretary-General reviewed the 45-year development of ASEAN, stressing that ASEAN has now become a prestigious regional organisation with an important role and position in Southeast Asia and Asia-Pacific.
The group is the leading important factor for ensuring an environment of peace, security, stability and cooperation for development in the region, while having multi-faceted relations with important partners in the world and playing a key role in some regional cooperation frameworks, he said.
The Secretary-General stressed that the celebration offers an opportunity for ASEAN to not only affirm its achievements and successes but also strengthen solidarity and unity, and consolidate its determination to fulfil the common goal of building the ASEAN Community in 2015.
Indonesian Foreign Minister Natalegawa emphasised the need to maintain and consolidate solidarity and unity within ASEAN as a foundation to promote the group's common voice and central role in regional issues.
On the occasion, the ASEAN Secretary announced the results of the ASEAN Drawing Competition 2012, one of the activities celebrating the association's 45th founding anniversary.
Kaung Wai Yan of Myanmar was awarded the ASEAN-Wide Winner for Category 1 (6-12years) while Hoang Phuong Linh from Viet Nam was the ASEAN-Wide Winner for Category 2 (13-18 years). — VNA