IPI welcomed Surin Pitsuwan and Martin Griffiths who discussed emerging approaches to conflict mediation in Southeast Asia.
At this time, there are no formal regional mechanisms to resolve conflicts in the region and no consensus on external involvement in conflict mediation. Principles of state sovereignty and non-interference are largely held to be absolute. The ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF) could be seen as a potential mechanism for conflict mediation, but there seems, at present, little support for the ARF to play a more active conflict prevention or mediation role. At the same time, there are important lessons to be learned, both from recent and successful conflict resolution in Southeast Asia and from ongoing challenges.
Present at the event were Surin Pitsuwan, the former Foreign Minister of Thailand, Martin Griffiths, Director, Centre for Humanitarian Dialogue, and Thant Myint-U, Visitng Senior Fellow, International Peace Institute on our panel. Terje Rød-Larsen, IPI’s President, served as Chair.