"The World and Japan" Database (Project Leader: TANAKA Akihiko)
Database of Japanese Politics and International Relations
National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies (GRIPS); Institute for Advanced Studies on Asia (IASA), The University of Tokyo

[Title] The ASEAN-Japan Joint Declaration:For Cooperation to Combat Terrorism and Transnational Crime

[Place] Nay Pyi Taw, Myanmar
[Date] November 12, 2014
[Source] Minsitry of foreign affairs of Japan
[Full text]

WE,, the Heads of State/Government of the Member States of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and Japan,

RECOGNIZING that terrorism and transnational crime pose serious threats to peace, stability and economic prosperity of ASEAN, Japan and the Asia-Pacific region as a whole and that they are impediments which could affect ASEAN’s efforts of community-building;

RECOGNIZING ALSO the evolving and spreading threats of terrorism and transnational crime and the growing nexus between them as recognized by the United Nations;

STRESSING that a large number of victims of terrorism and transnational crime are women and children, who are especially vulnerable to such threats and thereby need special protection;

AFFIRMING ASEAN’s support for Japan’s policy of “Proactive Contribution to Peace” and its effort in combating terrorism and transnational crime to ensure security during major events including the 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games in Tokyo;

DETERMING to reinforce the existing active channels of cooperation that have been established between ASEAN Member States and Japan in combatting terrorism and transnational crime, including the ASEAN Ministerial Meeting on Transnational Crime (AMMTC) plus Japan, the ASEAN Senior Officials Meeting on Transnational Crime (SOMTC) plus Japan, ASEAN Chiefs of Police Conference (ASEANAPOL) and the ASEAN-Japan Cybercrime Dialogue as well as the ASEAN-Japan Counter Terrorism Dialogue;

REAFFIRMING the importance of promoting information sharing between ASEAN Member States and Japan with a view to effectively combating terrorism and transnational crime;

DECIDING to upgrade and transform the ASEAN-Japan Counter-Terrorism Dialogues into the ASEAN-Japan Dialogues on Countering Terrorism and Transnational Crime to meet and address the evolving changes in the security landscape of the region and beyond;

DESIRING to enhance our cooperation in the fight against terrorism and transnational crime in the region, inter alia, in the following priority areas including by utilizing official development assistance (ODA), the Japan-ASEAN Integration Fund (JAIF) 2.0 as well as projects through international organizations such as the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC);

ENDEAVORING to develop a Work Plan which sets out a detailed ASEAN-Japan’s cooperation in the fight against terrorism and transnational crime to effectively implement this declaration;

HAVE DECLARED the following:


1.1 Whilst welcoming and commending the advances made in the fight against terrorism by ASEAN Member States, we acknowledge the level of threat of terrorism remains high in the ASEAN region as the threat of international terrorism is spreading and diversifying.

1.2 We underline the importance of continuously addressing the root causes and conditions conducive to terrorism including poverty, socio-economic disparity, and conflicts. We reaffirm that these causes should not be acknowledged as justifications for violence.

1.3 Recalling the 2004 ASEAN-Japan Joint Declaration for Cooperation in the Fight against International Terrorism and recognizing the need of a coordinated and coherent approach to tackle the spread of terrorism, we renew our commitment to enhance cooperation at bilateral, regional and international levels in preventing, disrupting and combating terrorism especially through:

(i) Countering violent extremism and radicalization that lead to terrorism;

(ii) Strengthening border control and immigration, transport security, law enforcement and capacity building in countering terrorism including countering terrorist financing;

(iii) Promoting capacity building for law enforcement agencies in the region through measures such as joint training, courses, equipping advanced instruments for countering terrorism, as well as exchange of information;

(iv) Reducing vulnerability of the private sector including multinational companies and protecting all citizens in the region from terrorism;

2. Illicit Drug Trafficking

2.1 We recognize that there are still many challenges facing ASEAN Member States as well as Japan, including the spread of heroin, methamphetamine and new psychoactive substances, despite long-standing efforts in the fight against illicit drug trafficking.

2.2 Recognizing that illicit drug trade is inextricably linked to other transnational crimes, we further enhance cooperation in the prevention of trafficking in, and reducing demand for, illicit drugs, and support ASEAN’s initiatives through the existing mechanism of ASEAN Ministerial Meeting on Transnational Crime (AMMTC) and efforts in pursuit of a Drug Free ASEAN including through:

(i) Capacity building of law enforcement authorities in areas such as border control;

(ii) Raising awareness on drug abuse prevention, especially at home, schools, and local communities;

(iii) Enhancing cooperation through joint training, information sharing, UNODC programs and relevant regional meetings;

3. Trafficking in Persons,

3.1 Many people have been identified as victims of trafficking in persons in ASEAN Member States and Japan. We reiterate that trafficking in persons is a grave violation of human rights and in particular, of women and children, and underscore the great urgency of enhancing cooperation to eliminate this scourge from our region.

3.2 We welcome the progress made in developing an ASEAN Convention on Trafficking in Persons (ACTIP) and a Regional Plan of Action to Combat Trafficking in Persons (RPA) which reflect the need to urgently combat trafficking in persons in the region.

3.3 Recognizing that trafficking in persons has wide harmful effects on economic, social and political aspects which impede development of the region and is considered to be a violation of human rights and an affront to human dignity, we intend to intensify cooperation to eradicate trafficking in persons in all aspects such as prevention, law enforcement, protection of victims and partnership through:

(i) Raising public awareness to prevent trafficking in persons;

(ii) Strengthening the law enforcement capabilities including through training, exchange of information and capacity building programs for police, immigration officers, coast guards as well as prosecutors in order to increase early identification of victims and prosecution of traffickers;

(iii) Enhancing the protection and assistance of victims including through reinforcing sheltering function, psychological or medical care, repatriation of victims;

(iv) Developing partnerships to address the underlying socio-economic factors in the region that help contribute to the problem of trafficking in persons;

4. Money Laundering

Realizing that organized crime generates huge profits which are used in illicit activities and terrorism and recognizing that those illicit profits are infiltrated into legitimate businesses and financial enterprises, we prevent and control money laundering including through:

(i) Enhancing regional capabilities in investigation, intelligence gathering, detection of money laundering;

(ii) Encouraging networking of the national agencies or organizations to further enhance information exchange and dissemination;

5. Sea Piracy

The number of incidents of piracy and armed robbery at sea against ships is increasing in the ASEAN region in recent years, which poses a growing threat to regional and the international maritime security. Recognizing that the free and safe navigation of commercial vessels in the region is critical for the economic interests of the region, Japan and the rest of the world, we enhance further cooperation to combat piracy and armed robbery against ships including through:

(i) Strengthening capacity building of relevant agencies, including coast guards;

(ii) Promoting exchanges and communications to combat piracy and armed robbery against ships more effectively;

(iii) Supporting each other in emergency circumstance on sea, where and to the extent possible, with a view to fighting pirate and rescuing victims from sea piracy ;

(iv) Enhancing regional cooperation including the Regional Cooperation Agreement on Combating Piracy and Armed Robbery against Ships in Asia (ReCAAP);

6. Arms Smuggling

6.1 Many ASEAN Member States are vulnerable to arms smuggling because of their geographical location in the midst of trade and transportation routes as well as their long borderlines and large coastal and island areas.

6.2 Recognizing that arms smuggling significantly exacerbates transnational crime which requires comprehensive action, and underlining the connection between arms smuggling and terrorism, we enhance cooperation to counter arms smuggling including through:

(i) Strengthening border law enforcement capabilities through training and institutional capacity building;

(ii) Promoting universalization of relevant treaties on Arms Smuggling in the region;

(iii) Promoting implementation of the United Nations Programme of Action to Prevent, Combat and Eradicate the Illicit Trade in Small Arms and Light Weapons;

(iv) Enhancing information exchange concerning arms smuggling in the region;

7. International Economic Crime

7.1 International economic crime such as credit card fraud, counterfeit currency, illicit trading of shares is more visible than ever before across the world, posing a serious threat to the economic and social stability of the ASEAN region and Japan.

7.2 Recognizing that the speed of technological advance, and new ways of doing business, makes the task of fighting international economic crime ever more difficult, we tackle international economic crime including through:

(i) Exchanging best practices of relevant institutions in combatting international economic crime;

(ii) Promoting law enforcement cooperation;

8. Cybercrime,

8.1 Recognizing that information and communication technology (ICT) is a key driver for sustainable development in the region, we share the common interests in increasing confidence and security in the use of ICT in the region as a whole. With increased dependency on ICT, our vulnerability to ICT threats has also increased. A number of crimes are now committed online, taking advantage of the anonymity, instantaneity and cost-effectiveness of using cyberspace. Recognizing cybercrime as a fast-spreading threat, we are committed to tackling it jointly through:

(i) Promoting information-sharing on cybercrime trends and lessons learned to combat cybercrime between ASEAN and Japan;

(ii) Enhancing international cooperation on cybercrime investigation and prosecution involving ASEAN Member States and Japan, including through the use of the existing channels of international cooperation such as the International Criminal Police Organization (ICPO - INTERPOL), G8 24/7 Network, and the electronic ASEANAPOL Database System(e-ADS);

(iii) Promoting capacity building in order to effectively prevent and combat cybercrime;

8.2 We welcome the first ASEAN-Japan Cybercrime Dialogue which was held on May 28, 2014 and reaffirm the need of the framework for continued dialogue. In further pursuing joint cooperation against cybercrime, we also seek to extensively involve international organizations such as the INTERPOL Global Complex for Innovation (IGCI), the Council of Europe and UNODC for implementing concrete capacity building projects in the region.