DAP proposes formation of All-Party working Group on common stands on international issues

by Parliamentary Opposition Leader, DAP Secretary-General and MP for Tanjung, Lim Kit Siang, in Petaling Jaya on Wednesday, 1st November 1995:

DAP proposes formation of All-Party working Group on common stands on international issues

DAP welcomes the statements by the UMNO President, Datuk Seri Dr. Mahathir Mohamed after the UMNO supreme council meeting yesterday that UMNO proposes that meetings similar to the successful joint gathering of political parties to oppose French nuclear testing last Thursday be held in the future.

DAP proposes the formation of an all-party working group on common stands on international issues by all political parties, as there are many issues which all Malaysian political parties can take a united position, such as Bosnia-Herzegovina and United Nations reforms.

All political parties should also try to establish a common position on an increasing number of international issues, so that the Malaysian foreign policy would become more and more non-partisan.

One of the issues which all political parties should try to reach accord is with regard to democratisation in Myanmar, to demand that the Myanmese military junta should enter into meaningful dialogue with the Nobel Peace Laureate, Aung Sang Suu Kyi to restore Myanmar to civilian and constitutional government and to free all political prisoners currently still in detention in Myanmar.

There should also be a follow-up by all political parties to their meeting last Thursday condemning resumption of French nuclear tests, as the French has exploded a third nuclear test since then and has shown no remorse to continuing to test its nuclear devices in the South Pacific.

It must be a matter of universal concern that a study commissioned by the French army and conducted by French scientists entitled “The atolls of Moruroa and Frangataufa: the living environment and its evolution had shown that the French underground tests at Moruroa and Fangataufa atolls had caused more damage than previous French atmospheric tests, resulting in severe cracking of the atoll tests sites and grisly deaths of fish.

A follow-up to the meeting if all political parties is needed to consider how Malaysia could help to mobilise international opinion to try to stop French President Chirac from continuing the remaining three French nuclear tests.

The Malaysian Government should work out a strategy whereby the Commonwealth Heads of Governments Conference (CHOGM) in New Zealand in mid-November could become an important international forum to demand that the French Government should cease and desist from all further nuclear tests in the South Pacific or face international sanctions.

One problem will be the British Prime Minister, John Major whose government has not only failed to utter a word of condemnation for the resumption of French nuclear tests, but has recently reached agreement with Chirac to “pursue and deepen” their nuclear co-operation – after the explosion of the third French nuclear tests.

If the Conservative government of John Major is not prepared to join the rest of the Commonwealth in issuing a strongly-worded condemnation of resumption of French nuclear tests at the CHOGM meeting in New Zealand, and to demand international sanctions if this demand is ignored by the French, then the British Government should be censured at the CHOGM meeting in New Zealand.