Beijing, China: The 2nd Informal ASEM Seminar on Human Rights in Beijing, China from 28th-29th June, 1999 had 66 participants and speakers from 24 member countries. Participants included officials, academics and NGO staff. The seminar was launched with 6 papers, two each (one European and one Asian) in each of the three themes of the conference which were:
Asian and European values
While Western countries tend to emphasize individual rights, other countries focus on the community or peoples’ rights. Is there a contradiction between individual and collective rights? Can the two approaches be reconciled?
Right to Education
Implications of the right to education as articulated by the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights.
Rights of Minorities
Persons belonging to many minorities suffer from discrimination in their civil, cultural, economic, political and social rights. The prevalence of ethnic conflicts and the potential of the conflicts to spill across international borders point to an urgent need to find solutions to minority rights problems
The seminar was co-chaired by Assistant Minister Wang Guang Ya of China and Professor Goran Melander of Sweden.
The Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) Informal Seminar on Human Rights aims to promote better mutual understanding and co-operation between the countries of Asia and Europe in the area of political dialogue, particularly on human rights issues, between government officials, academics and civil society participants of ASEM countries.
The series of ASEM Informal Seminars on Human Rights are co-organized by Asia-Europe Foundation, the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Raoul Wallenberg Institute of Sweden.