Original Development and Current State of ASEAN Association of South East Asian Nations Research Paper

Pages: 4 (1212 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 4  ·  File: .docx  ·  Level: College Junior  ·  Topic: History - Asian

¶ … ASEAN (Association of South East Asian Nations)

The Association of Southeast Nations has failed to devise effective strategies in regard to matters such as human rights and pollution across its existence, damaging the overall reputation it managed to develop internationally because of the rapid economic development of a number of countries within its borders. The approach ASEAN took concerning the topic of human rights is actually not very different from the ones the UN took when undergoing similar circumstances, given that both institutions failed to restore and preserve human rights on several occasions.

The human rights commission was only recently (2009) established by ASEAN, but it raised harsh criticism until the present. Although the role of the commission was claimed to be that of "a vehicle for progressive social development and justice, the full realization of human dignity and attainment of a higher quality of life for the peoples of ASEAN" (Association of Southeast, 2010), its line of attack was less than unproductive.

One of the main concepts promoted by ASEAN is that relating to how it does not intervene in the internal affairs of the countries being a part of it. Certainly, this initially seems to be a laudable approach, given that countries are not robbed away of their independent status. However, it became obvious that the non-interference policy ASEAN adopted was more than detrimental for people in countries failing to respect human rights.

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Most ASEAN countries are apparently unwilling to accept the approval of all six human rights conventions, with Cambodia and the Philippines being the only two countries in the union to have supported human rights in their complete form. It appears that most of the countries in ASEAN cannot agree to theories put across by the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC), considering that only three countries in the union have ratified it.

Research Paper on Original Development and Current State of ASEAN Association of South East Asian Nations Assignment

While the Cold War emphasized the usefulness of ASEAN, matters have gradually changed along with the last decade of the twentieth century, as the war ended and economies in several countries in ASEAN destabilized as a result of economic globalization. This brought forward a series of factors ASEAN did not think about when it created its internal affairs policies, with ethno-nationalist movements wreaking chaos through secession. Ethno-nationalists were quick to take advantage of the non-intervention policy ASEAN was known to profess.

Terrorism was yet another matter ASEAN had not previously dealt with extensively, making it obvious that the union had serious flaws in its organizing abilities. Because of disagreements between their principles and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, ASEAN leaders found themselves creating a new set of theories meant to make up a human rights agenda that would fit their needs.

It is not certain what caused countries within ASEAN to be reluctant to ratify human rights conventions as they were devised in 1948. One of the most probable reasons for which they did so is their desire to keep their independence as a great Asian power. Because of the concepts some Asians associate to the West, they are unwilling to accept Western concepts. Instead, ASEAN expressed its desire to detach its agenda from theories promoted in the West, wanting to develop its own social and political systems.

Given that Asian countries experienced economic revival without adopting capitalist principles, it seems understandable why they are reluctant to achieve success in dealing with internal matters through using Western concepts.

ASEAN's dedication to maintain Asian values is apparently more important than that of supporting human rights. Although the community is recognized because of the economic success present in several of its countries, it is greatly disadvantaged… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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