Executive Director of ASEAN Foundation, Dr. Makarim Wibisono was invited by H.R.H. Prince Norodom Sirivudh, Chairman of the Cambodian Institute for Cooperation and Peace (CICP) to participate in an informal brainstorming session on the ASEAN Institute for Peace and Reconciliation in Sokha Angkor Resort, Siem Reap on June 11, 2012. The session was chaired by Michael Vatikiotis and organized by CICP in cooperation with Humanitarian Dialogue Singapore. The other participants among others were Prof. Kamarulzaman from Malaysia, Prof. Hasyim Djalal, Mr. Ouseph Tharakan from HD Singapore, officials from the Indonesian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, official from the ASEAN Secretariat etcetera.
The session was briefed by Mr. Pratap from the ASEAN Secretariat on the update on the process of setting up the ASEAN Institute for Peace and Reconciliation (AIPR). Afterward, there were discussions revolved around funding and the initial operational approach of the AIPR, which essentially has an impact on funding. In terms of funding, there is a need for member states to commit to the establishment of the AIPR. This can be demonstrated by contributing a certain amount of money per member state to cover operational expenses for two years.
In terms of the function of the AIPR, there is a need to have a modest initial operational approach for immediate term. This approach revolves around four main activities geared towards mapping, training, providing space as a hub for networking and sharing, and research and policy planning. ASEAN should place its faith in its own dispute settlement mechanism i.e. the ASEAN Institute for Peace and Reconciliation.
The ASEAN Foundation was established by the ASEAN Leaders in December 1997 during ASEAN’s 30th Anniversary Commemorative Summit to help bring about shared prosperity and a sustainable future to all 10 ASEAN Member Countries, namely, Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Viet Nam.