ASEAN-EU Human Rights Policy Exchange, Belgium

ASEAN-EU Dialogue, October 2015

19-23 October 2015

Brussels, Belgium

Beneficiaries: AICHR, ACWC, ACW, ACMW

To enhance ASEAN-EU mutual engagement in the area of human rights, a Human Rights Policy Exchange was conducted between the two regions and hosted by the European Union through the European External Action service (EEAS) in cooperation with EU Commission Officials and Member States experts. This activity was a followup to the agreement made during the study visits to the EU undertaken by AICHR and ACWC in 2011 and 2013 as well as visits of the EU Special Representative for Human Rights to Jakarta in 2013 and 2014. Furthermore, at the 20th EU-ASEAN Ministerial Meeting held in Brussels on 23 July 2014, ministers from the two regions agreed to continue promoting respect for human rights and the rule of law and to include the exchange of good practices, information, dialogues, seminars and other capacity-building initiatives in the ASEAN-EU cooperation programme in the areas of human rights.

The ASEAN-EU Human Rights Policy Exchange was aimed at providing a high-level forum for discussion, debate, and exchange of best practices and lessons learned between ASEAN representatives and EU policymakers on their external policies on human rights. The policy exchange took stock of positive developments in the area of human rights in ASEAN and EU and discussed how the two regional organizations can cooperate and work together towards human rights promotion and protection especially in ASEAN. Topics of the dialogue planned for discussion ranged from  human rights development in ASEAN and in the EU; business and human rights; economic and social rights; rights of women and children; rights of migrant workers; to trafficking in persons among others.

This activity was held at the EU Headquarters in Brussels and invited selected representatives from AICHR, ACWC, ACMW, and ACW, including representatives from the ASEAN Secretariat. Furthermore, the policy exchange will be complemented by meetings and interactions with representatives from the European Parliament, Council of Europe, Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, and European civil society organizations among others.

For the joint press release on this policy exchange, click here.

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