Report Roundtable Discussion on ASEAN Women’s Blueprint and Alternative Regionalism on 20-21 April 2015, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Report by Carla Natan

In 2015, ASEAN will be integrated as a regional community and against this backdrop, APWLD organized a rountable discussion on ASEAN Women’s Blueprint and Alternative Regionalism to discuss the situation of ASEAN from economy and geopolitics. The discussion aimed to give a space for women of different sectors to discuss about their experience with ASEAN, see other dimensions of development and learn from regionalism in other continents.

APWLD invited APWAPS to present its view on women, peace and security in ASEAN and its impact on women. The APWAPS presentation gave a snapshot of the conflict in Asia, its roots causes and impacts on the life of the women, especially women as a victim and as an agent in conflict situations.

The experience of conflict women is not so much reflected in ASEAN mechanisms and processes as ASEAN is far away from women’s reality. Non interference and consensus in decision making process are the main obstacles that have caused ASEAN to be removed from its own people. This is a reality that contrasts with ASEAN’s suspposed goal of being people centered. Therefore the idea of ALBA of America Latin countries was presented to serve as a kind of mirror to reflect the challenges in ASEAN.

The meeting also discuss Post MDGS debate that will be finalized in June and approved in New York in September 2015. Gender and women empowerment are not much reflected in this policy discussion. Therefore it is important for national women’s movements to pay attention to the national process before regional and global meeting. The meeting was also able to discuss the indicators of ASEAN Women’s Blueprint.

The meeting also responded to the issue of Mary Jane Veloso, a Filipino migrant woman who was trafficked and put on death row in Indonesia due to a drug trafficking conviction. The representative of Indonesia and Philippines had a side meeting about the continued solidarity and advocacy to release her.

APWAPS also shared its views on the impact of women in the conflict areas in the talk show of First ASEAN Women Forum on April 22, 2015 as a pre-assembly forum that proceeded the ASEAN People’s Forum.

Carla’s presentation at the roundtable is available here.

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