Seoul, South Korea
28 August 2015
Mr. Thomas Walsh, President of the UPF
Mr. Taj Hamad, Secretary General of UPF
Excellencies, Distinguished Guests,
Ladies and Gentlemen
I would like to first of all extend my heartfelt appreciation to the Universal Peace Federation for the invitation to deliver a keynote speech at the 3rd World Summit 2015 under the theme of “Peace, Security and Human Development”, and the Sunhak Peace Prize award ceremony.
Therefore, I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate President Anote Tong of Kiribati and Dr Gupta of India for the SUNHAK PEACE PRICE awarded to them. I would also like to acknowledge the vision of the late Reverend Dr Sun Myung Moon and his wife Dr Hak Moon who continue their legacy for peace.
All of us gathering here at this joyous occasion are still witnessing various conflicts and tensions which continue to occur in many parts of the world such as the Middle East, South and Southeast Asia, East Asia as well as Africa. The direct consequence of conflict is well known, namely the suffering of the peoples and communities as well as lack of development.
In addition, we also witness the recent spread of radicalism and terrorism in countries and regions, which have caused great loss of human life, immense war and military spending which, in certain cases, lead sovereign country to failed state.
Religious and ideological conflicts are the most difficult to resolve. These underlying sentiments are easily spreading and receive popular support. The recent rise and spread of ISIS and during the year earlier of Al Qaeda which threaten all countries are two clear examples in front of us.
We must not forget, however, that the genesis of both Al Qaeda and ISIS could not be separated from the preceding wars and massive foreign armed interventions in Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria. Deadly wars has made system of governance in these countries crippled or destroyed which eventually left their peoples in desperation and lawless kind of situation. This in my opinion has made these countries become easy targets and fertile grounds of radical and violent ideologies.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Each and everyone of us must certainly want peaceful life which brings happiness. War means the end of peace and vice versa. And peace in all its forms is always better than any form of war. All religions express greetings of peace. Islam greets with “Assalamu Alaikum”. Christian greets by “Syaloom”. Other religions too greet with message of peace.
Based on our experiences in facing and overcoming various conflicts, I would like to share some lessons-learned with all of you.
Indonesia has experienced various conflicts which in the past had threatened our national unity. As a highly heterogeneous nation – with diverse ethnicities, cultures, languages, and religions, not to mention a territory divided into 34 provinces, 415 regencies and 93 cities spread out over 17000 islands, Indonesia acutely realizes that the potentials for conflicts are ever present.
First, the primary root of conflicts is usually a sense of inequality or injustice, whether in the field of economy, social or politics. Groups of peoples who feel that they have been mistreated are more prone to conflict. The situation can be worsened when feelings of injustice are also fueled by religious issues.
Since its independence 70 years ago, Indonesia experienced 15 big conflicts. Ten of which were caused by injustices in respect of territory, economy or politics, and five ideological and separatism conflicts. Out of the total number, only four conflicts were solved through peaceful dialogue and the rest by military measures which regretfully took many lives. (elaboration of conflicts resolution in Poso and Aceh)
Second, in order to solve a conflict appropriately and effectively, we need to look at the origin of the problem. There is no “one-size-fits-all” approach for all circumstances. But, one thing for sure is that peace must be achieved by peaceful means. Therefore, Indonesia has always put negotiation and dialogues as our first and foremost mechanism for resolving conflicts.
Third, negotiation for peace also requires a trustworthy mediator, who is agreed upon by both parties. It should be conducted in a neutral location. The negotiator from each side must have full authority in order to reach an implementable agreement.
Fourth, peace and security must be achieved through the collective efforts of the State and Society as a whole. In this regard, I notice that the 3rd World Summit program comprises of several sessions, namely the Leaderships of Woman, Religious Leaders, Youth and NGO. It is important to stress here that these groups are essentials in creating and maintaining peace and security, as well as in developing a nation once peace has been achieved.
In a conflict, women and children are usually the main victims. As a matter of fact, women can play a very significant role in creating peace. I have to admit that the formal involvement of Indonesian women in peace negotiations still is still limited. But, I also have to laud the Indonesian women who had taken part informally in preventing the escalation of conflict in their community. In the Maluku/Poso conflict, for instance, women took part in inter-faith dialogues. They also played an important post-conflict role to help develop their community by improving their families’ welfare through home industries and other enterprises.
In certain cases, the international community can help in ending an internal conflict of a country. NGOs, both local and international, are also crucial. They contribute significantly to the development of human capacity in conflict areas.
I believe Indonesia’s past experience in peacemaking is beneficial for our future reference. But, more importantly, it should be a lesson to us so that violent conflicts can be prevented. Even if a violent conflict could eventually be ended, the loss of lives and properties could still be very costly.
Peace is a precondition of sustainable development. But, without development and poverty eradication, there will be no sustainable peace. Therefore, we need to build the necessary infrastructure as well as improve the human capacity and people’s welfare with better education and healthcare. When peace and stability are in place, development should immediately be commenced. Sound development is also essential to prevent the recurrence of a conflict.
Let me underline also the importance of post conflict management, which should keep all concerned parties to maintain their hopes that their rights and obligations are secured, based on mutual trust.
The attainment of peace within a country will contribute to the peace, security and stability of a wider region. But, that does not mean that Indonesia is only responsible for maintaining peace in its own territory. As mandated by our 1945 Constitution, Indonesia has played and is committed to play an active role in promoting peace at both the regional and global level.
In the region, the establishment of the ASEAN Community will soon commence. Peace and security are preconditions for becoming united in one Community. One security issue in the region which has generated wide attention is the South China Sea dispute. Indonesia has played an active role as a natural leader in ASEAN in maintaining peace and security of the region, including by organizing a series of workshops on Managing Potential Conflicts in the South China Sea since 1990, pioneered by our own Law of the Sea expert, Prof. Hasjim Djalal.
Furthermore, Indonesia is also committed to increase its involvement in UN peacekeeping missions. As of 31 July 2015, Indonesia is ranked 12th as a Troop Contributing Country, with more than 2,700 personnels deployed in UN peacekeeping missions globally.
I hope all of Indonesia’s experiences that I have just shared with you are helpful. Finally, I hope more and more people from all over the world are inspired to participate actively in achieving peace. I thank you.