Issues related to Mongolia
The drastic changes in the environment surrounding Mongolia and the future development trend since the end of the Cold War make it imperative that Mongolia considers its future development and security issues within the framework of the Asia-Pacific region, including North-East Asia.
It is beyond Mongolia’s capacity to prevent all potential threats by relying solely on its own resources; therefore, Mongolia is certain that it can guarantee its security in the ever-changing external environment only by taking an active part in international relations in North-East Asia within the context of political and economic cooperation.
One of the most pressing development issues confronting Mongolia is to determine correctly the position of the country in the geopolitical and geo-strategic environment, which has emerged in North-East Asia as a result of the changes in international relations around the world. Mongolia needs to promote an energetic, friendly and mutually beneficial cooperation with Russia, China and with other countries of North-East Asia. Mongolia proceeds from the premise that the future of the country’s security depends on how the country approaches these relationships.
There are a number of regions in Asia and the Pacific where the balance of power must be maintained. Mongolia has successfully rid itself from being entangled in the confrontation between Russia and China and, in this sense; Mongolia must become an example to other countries lying in such regions. Although Mongolia is a small country, it has squarely refused to accept direct foreign military assistance, and it has solemnly stated that in times of peace it will not join any military bloc or alliance, station any foreign troops in its territory or allow their transit through its territory. To my mind these are our contribution to the global and regional security process.
Relationships with Russia and China
The Russian Federation and the People’s Republic of China respect Mongolia’s policy of guaranteeing its security through a non-aligned policy, within a framework of international cooperation and with the involvement of other influential countries. Furthermore, Mongolia is interested in further promoting trilateral Mongolia-Russia-China relationships, including the possibility of its becoming a bridge of cooperation between the two neighbors.
Recently, on September 11, 2014, the very first face-to-face trilateral meeting of the state heads of Mongolia, Russia and China took place in Tajikistan’s capital city Dushanbe. The meeting constituted a new, as some media defined, “non-standard” event in friendship and cooperation of the three countries. For international relations bilateral summit meeting is a usual tradition. But trilateral summits are not frequent. Thus this meeting could be defined as a historic.
It should be noted that this year is the most favorable in relations of heads of states of Mongolia, Russia and China. Mongolian President met presidents of the two neighbors during the International Conference on Cooperation and Confidence Building in Asia, held in Shanghai in May. Chinese President Xi Jing ping visited Mongolia at the end of August and the Russian President V. Putin in early September.
According to the Chinese President, trilateral relations between our countries are at the beginning, and as he noted “Good beginning is a half of success”. The Russian President said “Yes” to Mongolian President’s proposal on trilateral summit, while he noted that the summit meetings could be held in the three countries in rotation and suggested to set the first summit within the SCO. The three presidents agreed that it is important to transfer economic cooperation into trilateral format. In addition, the two expressed their support for Mongolia’s membership in APEC.
Participation in international peacekeeping and anti-terrorist actions
Active participation of Mongolian Armed Forces in international peacekeeping operations and actions against terrorism is expression of sincere strive of a small nation like our country to make its possible contribution to common efforts to maintain the world and regional peace and stability.
Successful participation of Mongolian military in peacekeeping missions under the UN mandate not only brings us respect from international community, but it also provides us with possibility to bring up our Armed Forces capability closer to international standard. Participation of Mongolian Armed Forces in international peacekeeping is now an integral part of our efforts for peace in the North East Asia.
Mongolia’s policy towards non-nuclear world
The Government of Mongolia put nuclear free issue to level of national state policy and rightfully declared the territory of the country as a NWFZ from the UN podium in 1992.
As a result of the meeting of ambassadors of the five nuclear powers in Geneva on August 23, 2012, the governments of these powers recognized NWFS of our country and agreed to issue a joint declaration in due regard. Consequently, in September 17 of the same year, their Permanent Representatives at UN signed the above-mentioned Declaration and pronounced the fact to the world community.
The main content of this Declaration is that that the five nuclear powers recognize the Law of Mongolia on Nuclear Weapon Free Status and pronounced to hold united position against any acts negatively affecting such independent status of the country.
The world community has been greatly recognizing and supporting the idea of NWFZ set by a single state that was initiated by Mongolia. This was a success of Mongolia’s national security policy and its implementation as well as one of our major contributions to international efforts to introduce regional security system in North East Asia.
Korean Peninsula: Mongolia’s stand
Having friendly relations with both Koreas, Mongolia has been striving to make its possible contribution to easing tension on Korean Peninsula. Although Mongolia is not taking direct part in the Six Party Talks on nuclear program, it closely follows its progress and constantly expresses its interest in developing these talks further as North East Asian security dialogue mechanism and in such case to be a part of this mechanism in possible form.
Mongolia’s policy in this direction mainly comprises the two following parts. Firstly, we give much importance to keeping Korean Peninsula free from the nuclear weapons. Secondly, our country considers that attempts for forced, rushing change of the present status may further escalate the tension and bring to region-wide armed conflict.
Mongolian state and government leadership officially pronounced that it is against isolation of North Korea on international arena. In order to solve the problem realistically, instead of forceful, rashed attempt to change the situation, it would be more rational to involve North Korea into international cooperation gradually, and make this a part of policy aimed at resolving this country’s nuclear program issue by peaceful dialogue.
We also consider that our experience of restless efforts for 20 years for international recognition of self-declaration of Mongolia as nuclear weapon free zone, and consequent recognition of such a status by the five nuclear powers – Permanent members of the Security Council and official issuance of the UN declaration in due regard, could be taken as an important international example that a small nation, like our country, may warrantee its security without implementing a nuclear program or deploying nuclear weapon on its soil. That is an important message for nations on Korean Peninsula.