DR HC MEGAWATI SOEKARNOPUTRI
5th President of the Republic of Indonesia
The KOR – ASIA Forum 2018
Seoul, 7 November 2018
Assalamualaikum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh,
Peace be with us all,
Ladies and Gentlemen,
It is indeed an honor for me to be able to speak in this precious forum. Today, I speak before you with a heart that is brimming with a beautiful sense of peace from the people of North Korea and South Korea.
Sixty three years ago, precisely in 1965, there was an event that can never be erased from my memory. In Jakarta, the Founding Father of North Korea, Kim Il Sung met my father, the Founding Father of Indonesia, Soekarno. At that time, Kim Jong Il was 23 years old and I, Megawati Soekarnoputri was 18.
We were present at the encounter and together, we visited Bogor Botanical Gardens. There my father gave Kim Il Sung an original Indonesian flower, a purple orchid. That orchid then named Kimilsungia by Bung Karno, the flower that was then became the national flower of North Korea.
Bung Karno said to me, “Mega, fight for peace on the Korean Peninsula. Stand tall not to take side between South and North Korea. Embrace the course of peace. Uphold firmly the Pancasila ideology that will guide you to the path of peace. This path will bring you to the leaders and the people of the two countries that are both fighting for the peace and sovereignty of Korea.”
Pancasila is the ideology of the nation and country of Indonesia. The five principles that become the guidance for the life of the nation and state, namely; Believe in the One and Only God, Nationalism, Internationalism, Democracy, and Social justice.
I will explain briefly on Pancasila;
Believe in the One and Only God in terms of the life principle of the Indonesian nation means to believe God in a civilized way, which is by mutual respect among believers of any faith. Then, what does nationalism mean? We are all representatives of nations. If we reject nationalism, that means we deny our own nationality and dismiss the sacrifices that have been made by previous generations. Nationalism will not grow nor develop without internationalism. And a true internationalism must be based on mutual respect, appreciation and the implementation of true universal values. One of the significant principles is that; “everyone is brothers and sisters”. Internationalism acknowledges equal right for every nation, whether it is big or small. Internationalism will imply if all forms of colonialism and oppression can be terminated, which also means an end to all kinds of tensions and conflicts among mankind.
And all differences are brought within the spirit of democracy. The democracy to which Indonesia adheres is not liberal democracy that emphasizes power and dismisses marginalized groups. To Indonesia, democracy consists of three main components, such as discussion, representative and consensus. Everything is negotiated with an equal paradigm. Therefore, there is no sense of competition among opposing opinions, no resolutions lashing out one another, even partiality is not allowed. Democracy must be performed as a robust effort to find stronger consensus rather than a forced resolution on behalf of the majority. Eventually, the four principles above must be within the same effort to reach the same goal. The goal is social justice. A manifestation of a condition where there is a just and prosperous society that can be found on any side of the world.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Pancasila has proven to be my guidance. When I served as the President of the Republic of Indonesia, this ideology brought me to meet the Supreme Leader of North Korea, Kim Jong-Il in 2002. At that time, I delivered a message from South Korea, from President Kim Dae-jung, on the will to revive a halted negotiation. I mentioned that the peace on the Korean Peninsula is crucial to safeguard the stability of the Asia-Pacific. The peace effort that I initiated was briefly halted due to a change of power in Indonesia. I was not re-elected as president. However, I never cease to fight for the peace effort on the Korean Peninsula. Until 2017, Mr. Moon Jae-in, President of South Korea requested me to be part of peacemaker for the Korean Peninsula.
Brothers and Sisters,
Many are doubtful that peace will be on the Korean Peninsula. However, I am certain that peace on the Korean Peninsula will occur. My conviction is due to my encounter with the people of both countries; the People of Korea, are the people who yearn for peace. The people that do not want for hostility and resentment to be passed down from one generation to another. The people who desires that the decisions, in regard to the Korean Peninsula, are made on behalf of the interests and the viability of the people.
Political prowess has been demonstrated during the negotiations on the Korean Peninsula. Leaders sat together to conduct process of democracy, discussion to reach agreement. They give considerations, discuss issues, as well as to agree on the principle and idea of peace. Together they appeared in front of the world showing a rational argument that became the basis for resolving the prolonged disputes on the Korean Peninsula.
On April, 27th 2018, leaders of the two countries, Moon Jae-in and Kim Jong Un, agreed to sign the Panmunjom Declaration for Peace, Prosperity and Unification of the Korean Peninsula. A new history is written, not only for both countries but also for the civilization of the Asian nation. I shed tears of joy as I learned about this great event.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
The peace on the Korean Peninsula has completed the historical fight of the Asia-Africa nations founding fathers, a century ago. We are currently in the 21st century, the time where everything moves faster and more dynamic. Sophisticated progress has rapidly occurred as well as the development of scientific knowledge and technology. Mankind is capable of curtailing distance, capable of facing obstacles, capable of transforming deserts into fertile land. Mankind is capable of exploring the oceans and universe, capable to break down even the smallest molecules. However, are the accomplishments in the scientific and technical field paralleled with the political skill?
The political prowess I am talking about is not the ability to fulfill the desire to conquer the world. The political skill I am talking about is the ability to use the political power as a tool to foster justice, humanity, and peace. The ability to prioritize the well-being of mankind. This is the highest moral in politics; the well-being of mankind!
Ladies and Gentlemen,
To me, the Korean Peninsula is the peninsula of the sovereignty of Asian nation. Peace settlement that has been made by the leaders of both countries, indeed, is a political attitude toward the principle in which every nation on earth has the equal right to decide its own nation. The same goes with our encounter today. We, as the delegation from independent and sovereign countries through this forum, speak on behalf of Asia. I believe the world will listen to us; We explain to the world that the matters regarding Asia are the affairs of the Asian nation itself. The future of Asia is in the hands of the Asian nation, not in the hands of other nations. Although, it does not mean that we do not need the nations from other continents. We are honest and open to admit: the Asian nation needs other nations to build the world’s civilization, just like other nations need Asian nation.
After the peace on the Korean Peninsula is accomplished, further task for Asia is to continuously guard and fill the peace. To fill the peace by not limiting itself to the matters occurring merely on the Asian continent, because we realize that now all countries in the world depend on one another. No more country and nation can isolate themselves from other nations. The matters and problems of the world are also the matters and problems of Asia. The future of Asia depends on the international multidimensional problem solving. Therefore, brothers and sisters, the peace on the Korean Peninsula shall indeed be the symbol of unity for the Asian nations. Nations that are united due to mutual attitude to be actively involved in giving positive contribution for the voyage of mankind.
Our further task after the achievement of the peace on the Korean Peninsula is to keep rallying for unity, not only in Asia but also with other nations especially Africa. Asia-Africa unites to oppose colonialism in any form, to any nation. Asia-Africa unites due to the disagreement toward racism, terrorism and radicalism, human trafficking and narcotics. Asia-Africa unites due to mutual agreement in defying international monetary crimes. Asia-Africa will keep on strengthening unity to face and seek solution for the change of global climate and other environmental issues. Asia-Africa unites to give birth to development, which creates prosperity for the citizen of the world.
Thank you for the leaders and the people of North Korea and South Korea. You have inspired Asia-Africa and the world that there is no greater task more important than to foster a peace. Without peace, the independence of any nation will be meaningless and useless. I, Megawati Soekarnoputri, on behalf of the Indonesian people, always and always will be part of the peace on the Korean Peninsula. The Korean Peninsula, the peninsula of the rise of Asia, the peninsula where the wings of the Asian peace are flown all over the world!
Wassalamualaikum Warahmatullah Wabarakatuh,
Om Shanti Shanti Shanti Om.
DR HC Megawati Soekarnoputri