13:38 GMT +316 July 2019
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    Indonesia President Joko Widodo

    Indonesian President Calls for Unity, Stability Within ASEAN

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    Indonesian President Joko Widodo called on the Association of Southeast Asian Nations leaders to strive for greater unity, safety and stability in the region.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — On Tuesday, three-day ASEAN summit opened in Lao capital of Vientiane.

    "We cannot allow instability our region. We cannot let other countries determine the fate of our region's security and stability… Without unity, I believe ASEAN's role as the main contributor to the safety and stability of the region will disappear. That would be a grim future," Widodщ told the summit, as quoted by the Jakarta Globe newspaper on Tuesday.

    Jokowi encouraged stronger economic partnerships within the region, and emphasized that the gaps between the ASEAN countries' levels of development should be minimized to reach progress, in particular, market extension and technical development.

    He also called on the regional states to respect and protect the rights of migrant workers currently in the region.

    ASEAN is a regional intergovernmental organization, which brings together ten countries in Southeast Asia, namely Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Brunei, Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam. Taken together, ASEAN countries would rank as the world's seventh largest economy.

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