Friday, April 24, 2015

Historical walk of Asia-Africa conference flags off in Bandung

The Historical Walk of the Asia-Africa Conference (AAC) commenced at 9:15 a.m. local time, led by a row of military personnel bearing the flags of the countries participating in the AAC.

During the Historical Walk, a group of youth wearing West Javas traditional clothing carried banners.

President Joko Widodo accompanied by Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak, Vice President Jusuf Kalla, President of China Xi Jinping, President of Myanmar Thein Sein, and dozens of other African-Asian leaders, including from the youngest country, East Timor, took part in the historical walk.

They walked from Savoy Homann Hotel to the Merdeka building via Jalan Asia Afrika road.

During the first AAC, Soekarno from Indonesia, Norodom Sihanouk from Cambodia, U Nu from Myanmar, Gamal Abdel Nasser from Egypt, and Zhou Enlai from China, among others participated in the historical walk.

President Joko Widodo along with the leaders of Asian and African countries also took part in a photo session.

Earlier, the Indonesian Ministry of Foreign Affairs revealed that some 22 heads of state/government or deputies (VVIPs) from Asian and African countries participated in the Historical Walk in Bandung.

This walk was organized as one of the events commemorating the 60th anniversary of the AAC.

"There will be 22 VVIPs present in Bandung along with hundreds of ministerial- and senior-level delegates," Director General for the Asia-Pacific Region of the ministry Yuri Thamrin remarked here on Thursday.

The world leaders who joined the Historical Walk were King of Swaziland Mswati III, President of Timor-Leste Taur Matan Ruak, President of Zimbabwe Robert Gabriel Mugabe, Chairman of the Presidium of the Supreme Peoples Assembly of North Korea Kim Yong-nam, Prime Minister of Nepal Sushil Koirala, Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen, Prime Minister of Rwanda Anastase Murekezi, Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak, and President of China Xi Jinping.

While some of the leaders headed to Bandung from Jakarta aboard an aircraft provided by the Indonesian government, others such as those from Myanmar, Malaysia, China, Angola, Vietnam, and South Africa used the aircraft of their respective countries.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, King of Jordan Abdullah II, Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, Vice President of Seychelles Danny Faure, Palestinian Prime Minister Rami Al Hamdallah, and Sultan of Brunei Darussalam Hassanal Bolkiah, however, did not participate in the event.

Besides the Historical Walk, other activities held in Bandung included a minute of silence, the reading out of the Dasasila (Ten Principles of) Bandung, and the signing of the Bandung Message. (Antara)

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