PHNOM PENH, June 17 (Xinhua) -- Cambodian Foreign Minister Prak Sokhonn said on Wednesday that multilateralism is "indispensable" to deal with future threats like pandemics effectively.
"To combat future threats such as pandemics, multilateralism is indispensable as countries need a more coordinated and collective response based on scientific data and evidence," he said during the special ASEAN-Russia Foreign Ministers meeting on COVID-19 via video conference.
All countries need to have unhindered and timely access to quality, safe, and affordable medicines and vaccines as global common goods, he added.
According to a Cambodian foreign ministry's press statement released after the meeting, Sokhonn, who is also a deputy prime minister, said Cambodia was pleased that both ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) and Russia supported the adoption of the resolution by the World Health Assembly last month as well as acknowledged the significance of implementing health measures in accordance with the International Health Regulation 2005.
The statement said that during the meeting, ASEAN and Russia urged the international community to put aside differences in their political agenda and to act collectively, in a spirit of responsibility, solidarity and cooperation, in order to support each other in this difficult time.
ASEAN groups Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.