The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) is a regional organization established in 1967 comprised of countries in the South East Asia region.
In 2009, the ASEAN Intergovernmental Commission on Human Rights (AICHR) was formed to promote and protect the human rights of people in the region and was tasked to formulate the ASEAN Human Rights Declaration, which aimed to standardize all human rights of all people in the Southeast region of Asia.
•Five member countries have laws that target and criminalize transgender women for ‘cross dressing’: Brunei, Burma, Malaysia, Singapore and Thailand.
•Six member countries of ASEAN have laws criminalizing same sex activities between mutually consenting adults: Brunei, Burma, Malaysia and Singapore, Philippines (in Marawi City), Indonesia (in South Sumatera province).
•None of the 10 member countries of ASEAN have national anti-discrimination laws to protect people of diverse sexual orientation or gender identity or other minorities and vulnerable groups.
“The only glimpse the public and civil society groups have had of the proposed declaration was by way of a leaked document” Jakarta Post
The ASEAN Human Rights Declaration does not include or recognize the rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex and queer (LGBTIQ) persons.
“Civil society groups gathered in Phnom Penh last week argued that time was running out to rid the proposed draft of clauses that would restrict peoples’ rights rather than protecting and enhancing them.”
Since it’s conception, LGBT groups have been demanding the inclusion of human rights based on sexual orientation and gender identity in the ASEAN Human Rights Declaration but our demands have fallen on deaf ears. This is a clear sign by the member countries of ASEAN that they do not recognize the existence of LGBTIQ persons and have no interest in protecting and promoting the human rights of LGBTIQ persons in this region.
Take Action! Stand in Solidarity with the ASEAN LGBT Caucus and IGLHRC in demanding the inclusion of LGBT Rights in the ASEAN Human Rights Declaration!