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Jakarta Post

Khun Surin leaves legacy for ASEAN unity

Stockholm   /   Wed, December 6, 2017   /  10:15 am
Khun Surin leaves legacy for ASEAN unity Marching in: People take part in the ASEAN 50 Parade on Jl. MH Thamrin in Central Jakarta. The parade displayed national and traditional cultures from ASEAN member countries. (JP/Ibrahim Irsyad)

Former Thai foreign minister Surin Pitsuwan, affectionately known as Khun Surin, was a strong and compassionate ASEAN secretary-general. I have high respect and many fond memories of Dr Pitsuwan, who passed away on Nov. 30. More than just my superior, he was my mentor and a thoughtful leader, particularly regarding his vision for the progress of ASEAN and world peace. Khun Surin was Thailand’s highest-ranking diplomat through the 1992-2001 period. I remember when he interviewed me as I was applying for the ASEAN deputy secretary-general post for community and corporate affairs. He advised me to “please help the ASEAN Secretariat.” Not long after I was accepted to fill the position. One of his greatest accomplishments as secretary-general was the revamping of the ASEAN Secretariat, to fulfill the vision for a peoples-centered organization while working toward a ...

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