May 9, 2011
(KPL) A Lao delegation led by Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Bounkeuth Sangsomsak attended the 5th Session of the Asean Intergovernmental Commission on Human Rights (AICHR) in Jakarta, Indonesia, from April 25-29.
Mr. Bounkeuth, who is also the Lao representative to the AICHR, represented the national interests of Laos and also acted in the interest of regional cooperation towards the achievement of an Asean Community in 2015, the ministry reported.
AICHR is an inter-governmental body created in accordance with the Asean Charter and the AICHR Terms of Reference adopted in 2009.
The Commission functions to promote human rights cooperation in Asean through education, research and dissemination of information in the context of regional and national practices.
According to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the AICHR 5th session discussed, and reached agreements on, important issues under its work plan.
These included adopting Terms of Reference for the Drafting Group on Asean Human Rights Declaration, key elements of the Five Year Work Plan (2010-2015) focusing on high priority programmes for 2012-2015, and Rules of Procedure for the AICHR Fund which is key to the implementation of high priority programmes for 2010-2011.
An agreement was also reached on the Terms of Reference for Thematic Studies on Corporate Social Responsibilities and Human Rights in Asean.
Additional meetings were held to discuss the Terms of Reference for Thematic Studies on Migration, and the publication of a booklet about the Commission.
The most urgent and important focus of the AICHR at this time is the drafting of the Asean Human Rights Declaration which should be completed by the end of 2012, the ministry reported.
The 6th Session of the Commission is scheduled to take place in Vientiane from June 28 to July 2.