Statement Outcome of the International Summit on Strengthening Sustaining Peace in the Asia Pacific Region

The International Coalition of Sites of Conscience (ICSC), the Global Initiative for Justice, Truth and Reconciliation (GIJTR), Asia Justice and Rights (AJAR), and Cross-Cultural Foundation (CrCF) co-organized the International Summit on “Bringing Community Initiatives: Strengthening Sustaining Peace and Guarantees of Non-Recurrence in the Asia Pacific Region,” in Bangkok, Thailand from 12-14 October 2023. Its purpose is to foster partnerships, facilitate dialogue, and encourage the sharing of experiences to promote human rights documentation, truth-telling, accountability, and memorialization. We have come together in an effort to promote guarantees of non-recurrence of mass human rights violations and sustainable peace in the Asia-Pacific region.

The delegates representing Aceh – Indonesia of civil society organizations from across the region came together to underscore the pressing necessity to confront the persistent challenges and human rights violations in the region by placing the following on record:

  1. We, the delegates who attended the international summit extend our sincere solidarity to all those who are enduring armed conflicts in Manipur, Myanmar, Palestine, South Thailand, Tibet, Philippines and Palestine and are extremely concerned about the suffering caused by the relentless persecution of Rohingyas, Tibetans, and Indigenous Peoples whose lands have become the battleground of war. We call on all parties to respect International Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law.
  2. We recognize the advancements achieved in transitional justice and peacebuilding, but we are also cognizant of the enduring challenges of impunity and absence of accountability to mass atrocities perpetrated by both state security forces and non-state armed groups. We recognize the need to achieve a balance between transitional justice and peacebuilding in post-conflict environments, as well as their respective significance in the Asia Pacific region.
  3. We emphasize the critical importance of guarantees of non-recurrence in achieving sustainable peace and development, safeguarding the rule of law, and preventing future human rights violations. It is widely acknowledged that in order to attain lasting peace, it is critical to implement comprehensive reforms that target underlying issues, establish justice and accountability for historical transgressions, and address root causes of violence.
  4. We reiterate the significance of civil society in advocating for local initiatives, listening and finding one’s voice through arts and other creative forms of expression, and cultivating pluralism, diversity, and inclusivity is duly recognized. The contributions of civil society are critical in promoting accountability and tackling the fundamental factors that contribute to conflicts.
  5. We reaffirm our commitment in the pursuit of truth and justice as part of civil society efforts aimed at preventing conflicts and to advocate for accountability as a fundamental cornerstone in fortifying transitional justice, sustainable peace, and non-recurrence guarantees  in the Asia Pacific area.
  6. We relay our sincere message to victims who are not and shall never be at fault. We fully recognize that the root cause of the abuse of power is well entrenched in our systems and political structures that we are trying to change. Ignoring the plight of victims and their ongoing revictimization is perpetuating injustice.
  7. Through the sharing of lessons learned and best practices, we recognize the role of art and other creative forms in the process of reconciliation, healing, and advancing sustainable peace.
  8. May the collective insights, understandings, and commitments formed during this Summit function as an inspiration, a source of strength, and a boost for constructive transformations in our communities. We will persist in our collaborative endeavors to achieve sustainable peace, justice, and guarantees for non-recurrence of mass human rights violations in the Asia-Pacific area and beyond.
  1. Sayana Ser, Peace Institute of Cambodia (PIC)
  2. Tsering Norbu, The Tibet Museum Dharamshala, India
  3. Fred Lubang, Nonviolence International Southeast Asia
  4. Tim Minea, Kdei Karuna Organization, Cambodia
  5. Samnang Ny, Tuolsleng Genocide Museum(TSGM)
  6. Man Sokkoeun, Youth For Peace Organization
  7. Razia sultana. RW Welfare Society (RWWS)
  8. Bikash Basnet, Advocacy Forum-Nepal (AF)
  9. Morn Kaein, Asian Forum for Human Rights and Development
  10. Adiba Rhamaan, Social Action of Voluntary Efforts (SAVE)
  11. Yoojung Hong, The May 18 Foundation, South Korea
  12. George, Asia Justice and Rights (AJAR), Timor-Leste
  13. Azharul Husna, KontraS Aceh, Indonesia

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