The Ambassador of Cambodia to Indonesia, H.E. Khem Bunneang, today deposited Cambodia’s instrument of ratification of the ASEAN Charter to the Secretary-General of ASEAN, Dr. Surin Pitsuwan. The simple ceremony, which took place at the ASEAN Secretariat, was witnessed by ASEAN Ambassadors and representatives of the ASEAN embassies in Jakarta.

During the ceremony Dr. Surin expressed his gratitude to Cambodia. “The Kingdom of Cambodia is number six in the momentum that we have created since the 20th of November last year when our Leaders signed their names onto the ASEAN Charter in Singapore. I can see the momentum growing and growing.” Dr. Surin added, “Cambodia chronologically is the youngest member of ASEAN but has been very, very active, contributing to the works of ASEAN all along.”

H.E. Khem Bunneang said, “I do hope with pride that after all ASEAN Member States ratify and deposit their instrument of ratification of the ASEAN Charter with the Secretary-General of ASEAN, the Association of Southeast Asian Nations will become a legal entity. Therefore, I would also like to take this opportunity to encourage any Member State who has not completed its internal procedures to please do it as soon as possible, so that the ASEAN Charter, our historic milestone document, can quickly come into effect.”

Cambodia ratified the ASEAN Charter on 2 April 2008, becoming the sixth ASEAN Member State to have done so. The instrument of ratification was signed by H.E. HOR Namhong, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation.

The ASEAN Member States that have deposited the instrument of ratification of the ASEAN Charter are (in chronological order) Singapore, Brunei Darussalam, Malaysia, Lao PDR, Viet Nam and Cambodia. The remaining four are Indonesia, Myanmar, the Philippines and Thailand.

The ASEAN Charter shall enter into force on the thirtieth day following the date of deposit of the tenth instrument of ratification with the Secretary-General of ASEAN.