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The 43rd ASEAN Summit Officially Opens, President Jokowi Affirms All Regional Countries Remain Solid

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JAKARTA — The President of the Republic of Indonesia, Joko Widodo (Jokowi) has officially opened the 43rd ASEAN Summit. In his speech, he emphasized that until now the unity of all regional countries has been solidly maintained.

“As a family and as Chair of ASEAN, I emphasize that the unity of ASEAN is still well maintained,” he said.

Even so, the Head of State also did not deny that there were definitely some differences of opinion in it.

In fact, according to him, the existence of differences of opinion is a sign that the democratic climate among all ASEAN member countries is very good.

Apart from that, the existence of differences of opinion indicates that all countries in the region have an equal position.

“Because differences of opinion actually foster democracy and show that we as a family have an equal position,” said President Jokowi.

Furthermore, according to him, equality which continues to be cared for by all ASEAN countries is the main value that continues to be upheld together in order to continue to move forward to become a region that leads the world.

“Equality is actually the main value that we respect and uphold together within the framework of unity and togetherness so that the great ship of ASEAN can continue to move forward,” explained the Head of State.

It cannot be denied that the current world conditions are not good with a lot of turmoil and uncertainty.

This is of course a challenge in itself, even involving the struggle for influence by major global powers.

However, in the midst of this world turmoil, all ASEAN member countries have remained solid and have agreed not to become proxies for any party.

Instead of being a proxy, all regional countries continue to encourage and open up very broad cooperation with many parties and seek peace and prosperity together.

“But ASEAN has agreed not to become a proxy for any power to cooperate with anyone for peace and prosperity,” said President Jokowi.

He reiterated to the world that there should not be any other power that actually rides on the countries in ASEAN so that it is used as an arena of rivalry because it will have a bad impact.

The reason is, how ASEAN was formed was not for that purpose, but to continue to grow cooperation so as to create prosperity, stability and peace for the world.

“Don’t make our ASEAN ships an arena of mutually destructive rivalries, but make our ships a field to grow cooperation, create prosperity, stability and peace, not only for the region but also for the world,” he stressed.

Indeed, achieving progress will not be easy and ASEAN itself will not be able to navigate it alone without help from other parties.

Therefore, President Joko Widodo invited all parties to realize this cooperation within a framework of equality and mutual benefit so that they can reach the epicenter of growth together.

“ASEAN partner ships, let’s work together to realize equal and mutually beneficial cooperation to sail together towards the epicenter of growth,” concluded the Head of State.

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