25 October 2004
Asian Conference on Interaction, Confidence-Building Good Example of Cooperation to Promote Common Security, Secretary-General Tells Almaty Meeting
NEW YORK, 22 October (UN Headquarters) -- Following is Secretary-General Kofi Annans message to the Ministerial Meeting of the Conference on Interaction and Confidence-Building in Asia, as delivered today in Almaty, Kazakhstan, by Vladimir Goryayev, Deputy Director a.i. for Asia and the Pacific, United Nations Department of Political Affairs:
I am pleased to convey my best wishes to this meeting of Foreign Ministers of the Conference on Interaction and Confidence-Building in Asia. An increasingly significant regional security forum, the CICA process has an important role to play in shaping the future architecture of cooperation in Asia. The Almaty Summit of June 2002 and the adoption of the Almaty Act were key events in the process of building CICA into a viable institution of regional cooperation. The United Nations welcomes the fact that the two main documents you are planning to adopt at this meeting -- the CICA Rules of Procedure and the CICA Catalogue of Confidence-Building Measures -- call for a strengthening of cooperation between our two institutions.
The geopolitical and security situation in the world and in Asia is changing rapidly, as we face unprecedented threats posed by terrorism, proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, drug trafficking and regional conflict -- challenges which require coordinated and collective responses. By strengthening the sense of collective responsibility for your common future, Asian nations will be able to confront threats more effectively, ensure dynamic economic and social development, and provide a better life for Asias 3.5 billion people.
In the past decade, many countries in Asia have achieved notable progress in economic and social development. Others are working hard to find ways to realize their great potential. We must do all we can to prevent armed conflict from undermining development, prosperity and the advancement of universal human values. We must work for a comprehensive prevention strategy, encompassing a range of political, diplomatic, developmental and humanitarian instruments. And we need to develop a similarly comprehensive strategy to combat terrorism.
The continued dynamic development of the CICA process is welcome evidence that a wide variety of nations can work together in practical ways to promote common security and stability. In that spirit, I wish all of you a most successful meeting.
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