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MAKASSAR DECLARATION

We the participants of the 4th General Assembly of the Centrist Asia-Pacific Democrats International (CAPDI) convened in Makassar, Indonesia on the 20-21th of May 2013 highly values the exemplary leadership of H.E. Dr. Jusuf Kalla (Chairman of CAPDI), Samdech Techo Hun Sen (Chairman Emeritus of CAPDI), and Hon. Jose de Venecia Jr (President and Chief Executive of CAPDI). Their vision enlightened the deliberation of the General Assembly and brought about a convergence of ideas to follow on the Phnom Penh Accord 2010, and as guided by CDI-AP (Centrist Democrat International, Asia-Pacific), Manila Declaration 2006, and the Jakarta Declaration 2008, reiterating the practical benefits of centrist political parties, parliaments, eminent persons, academicians, business communities, media civil societies and other organizations as channels for dialogue between peoples. We hereby announce our strong commitment to join hands as centrist democrats in the region to craft policies for peace and reconciliation by getting to the root causes of conflicts faced by our communities and concurrently also fighting climate change.
Asia Pacific is rich of successful and unsuccessful stories in addressing conflicts through peacemaking efforts. Such peacemaking measures should address not only the symptoms, but also the root causes of these regional challenges. Even further, equipped with such measures, the Asia Pacific countries must stand ready to anticipate any future regional challenges. CAPDI aims to harness the "power of public opinion and collective efforts”, which has been demonstrated in recent years as catalysts of political and social reform that can promote harmony and a culture of peace through dialogues, mediation, good offices, also enhance the philosophy and the practices that assure democratic accountability by peaceful resolutions of differences. We, however, shall respect the principle of co-existence even between the conflicting parties. We recommend the establishment of inter-governmental working group to create instruments of common security, common stability, and common prosperity that would rule out the use of force in Asia-Pacific, which shall complement the ASEAN’s Treaty of Amity and Cooperation. We believe that the establishment of an equitable and prosperous Asia-Pacific can be ensured by addressing the development gap. In this instance, we shall not tolerate any status quo that strengthens economical and financial monopolies and acts of social injustice, especially in the destruction of the environment.
We believe that there is a need to explore all possible ways and means to settle differences such as efforts in supporting CAPDI’s government members, political parties and civil societies to seek alternatives to peace-making practices that are acceptable to conflicting parties, as well as learning from models of reconciliations in Cambodia, East Timor, Aceh in Indonesia, and Mindanao in the Philippines.
We believe that peace, stability and prosperity in the Asia-Pacific region depend on a conducive regional environment. In this context, CAPDI strongly encourages all parties to work towards mitigating tensions in the Korean Peninsula, the South-China Sea, the East-China Sea, the problems in the Middle East, the Southern Thailand, Malaysia-Philippines, India-Pakistan, Nepal, and the ethnic dispute in Myanmar. This Declaration encourages more constructive dialogues between governments, political parties, civil societies and academicians, the inclusion of all stakeholders in political systems, and the good and responsible governance from governments to their people, in order to achieve prosperity, sustainable development, and respect for human dignity. We have built networks, common values and joint-efforts through CAPDI in the past years. Today, we stand together to enter the phase of implementation of our shared commitments. We believe that the focus of our efforts in the immediate years should be to promote peace and reconciliation, and to fight climate change for the sake of empowering more people in Asia-Pacific and the world. We strongly believe that a centrist approach to facing the many issues is the best framework to solve the problems based on the following 21 principles.
On Ideology:
1. Political parties need to develop centrist ideological platforms, “middle-of-theroad, balanced approach of moderation which rejects any forms of extremism.
On Politics:
2. Political parties and civil societies play crucial roles in promoting economic and social development and creating political stability, representing the aspirations of the people. We praise political leaders who are also familiar with the dynamics of economic statecraft and passionate peace-makers.
3. Peace and reconciliation need cooperation from all elements in society.
4. Spiritual values and human rights are critical components in achieving peace and reconciliation.
5. We call on all governments, political parties, civil societies, academicians, business communities, media and other organizations to work together in promoting the human development of the region. We believe that this is the most effective way to achieve the United Nations Millenium Development Goals.
6. We call for the strengthening of political parties to enable them to pass on their wisdom to the succeeding generations.
7. We call for the modernization of political parties to address the challenges of the 21st century, the Asian Century.
8. We will strengthen relationship between CAPDI and ICAPP (International Conference of Asian Political Parties) to promote cooperation in Asia-Pacific and connectivity with other regions.
On Economy and Environment:
9. We agree to create business councils within CAPDI as part of the organizational structure to promote business opportunities within the region, and learn the experiences from other regions.
10. We call the governments, parliaments, political parties, academicians, business communities, media, civil societies and other organizations to develop models of people’s empowerment through environment conservation and utilization. In this effort, we hereby endorse the World Ecological Civilization Declaration and Ecological Safety Action Plan adopted in Bali 2012 presided over by IESCO (International Ecological Safety Cooperative Organization) in cooperation with ICAPP, CAPDI with the support of the UN.
On Social Affairs:
11. A family that is strong and united is the beginning of strong state. We, as nations in the Asia-Pacific, put family values as the foundation of our society and culture above ideological differences.
12. We encourage the governments, parliaments, political parties, academicians, business communities, civil societies and other organizations to develop international labor protocols within the Asia-Pacific region to respond to the phenomenon of migrant workers, and to respecting their human rights.
13. We place human dignity as a central component of the development of our societies.
On Culture and Education:
14. We see religion as providing a spiritual dimension in societies, therefore encouraging governments to be more moral and ethical.
15. We call governments, parliaments and political parties to use and disseminate connectivity instruments that are built through CAPDI and ICAPP, for instance the network of culture, education, economy and business, climate change, youth, women, and inter-faith dialogues.
16. We agree to appoint Universitas Indonesia, Universitas Paramadina in Jakarta, and Universitas Hasanuddin in Makassar as institutions for CAPDI in developing cooperation amongst educational institutions in Asia-Pacific and continue developing centrist principles for Asia Pacific. We are open to other academic institutions to share their expertise in pursuit of CAPDI’s goals.
17. We call the governments, parliaments, political parties, academicians, media, business communities, civil societies and other organizations to work toward the promotion of the culture of peace and reducing the culture of violence.
On Defense:
18. We believe that national defense does not rest solely on the control of power and ownership of weaponries, but rather on the strengthening of cooperation in economy, social and culture. We believe also that size does not necessarily equal strength, since strength of a country emanates primarily from institutions having legitimacy under the rule of law and credibility in the eyes of the people, and the supremacy of the ballot over bombs and bullets.
19. We believe that young people with centrist perspectives are crucial in preventing the influence of extremist forces. We therefore encourage interaction between young people with CAPDI and ICAPP.
On Security:
20. We believe that terrorism acts to advance a particular political agenda cannot be tolerated. Terrorism has no religion and it is the enemy of humanity.
21. We will start developing common instruments to handle transnational crimes such as drugs, cyber-crimes, human trafficking, and in promoting gender equality.In this Declaration, we acknowledge the CAPDI’s achievements, led by CAPDI leaders, that have influenced the world, such as the launching of the first World Eco-Safety Assembly organized by IESCO in Phnom Penh 2010 and in Bali 2012, that has now given birth at last month’s meeting in Hanoi, Vietnam by the ICAPP Standing Committee to establish the “Global Parties Ecological Alliance”; the establishing of CAPDI Peace Council that blends in well with efforts to promote Inter-Faith Harmony; the initiation of Global Summit to Combat Narcotics Trafficking with the newly elected President of Mexico in August 2012; the gathering of African political parties in Khartoum 2013, Sudan, to form ICAPP’s African counterpart, the Council of Political Parties, and COPPAL, the representative organization of Latin American political parties has joined hands with ICAPP to form the Asia-Latin America Business Council. We praise political leaders who are also familiar with the dynamics of economic statecraft and passionate peace-makers.

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