US Ambassador to ASEAN delivers confirmation of ratification of treaty protocol

The USA Ambassador to ASEAN, Mr David Lee Carden, has presented to Mr Sayakane Sisouvong, Deputy Secretary-General of ASEAN for ASEAN Political-Security Community, his country's Instrument of Acceptance to the 3rd Protocol to the Treaty of Amity and Cooperation in Southeast Asia (TAC), marking the USA as the 11th High Contracting Party to ratify the 3rd Protocol.

The treaty was originally signed in to force on 24 February 1976 by the then-leaders of ASEAN, Lee Kuan Yew, Ferdinand Marcos, Datuk Hussein Onn, Kukrit Pramoj and Suharto. Newer members have all acceded to it upon or before joining the Association. It was amended on 15 December 1987 by a protocol to open the document for accession by states outside South East Asia and again on 25 July 1998, to condition such accession on the consent of all member states.

On 23 July 2001, the parties established the rules of procedure of the treaty's High Council, which was stipulated in Article 14 of the document. On 7 October 2003, during the annual summit, a declaration was released that stated: "A High Council of [the treaty] shall be the important component in the ASEAN Security Community since it reflects ASEAN’s commitment to resolve all differences, disputes and conflicts peacefully."

China was the first country, followed by India, outside ASEAN to sign the treaty, which has been endorsed by the General Assembly of the United Nations.

During their recent meeting, Mr Carden and Mr Sisouvong exchanged views on the successes of the recent 44th AMM/PMC/18th ARF held in Bali last month and praised Indonesia's role as the ASEAN Chair.