ASEAN Perspectives

President Duterte instituting reforms to protect rights of law-abiding Filipinos, Cayetano tells UN assembly

  (Eagle News) — Foreign Affairs Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano told the 73rd United Nations General Assembly in New York of the Philippine government’s efforts in instituting reforms to protect law-abiding Filipinos in the country, as he defended the Duterte administration’s war on drugs and criminality. Cayetano said that the administration of President Rodrigo Duterte is trying to “salvage” the Philippines, and preventing it from becoming a narco-state. “As a sovereign and democratic country led […]

EU launches Asia strategy to rival China’s ‘new Silk Road’

  by Damon Wake Agence France Presse BRUSSELS, Belgium (AFP) — As doubts grow over China’s vast “Belt and Road” trade infrastructure project, the EU is launching an alternative plan for Asia that it says will not saddle countries with debt they cannot repay. EU member countries are expected to sign off on the new “Asia connectivity strategy” — which aims to improve transport, digital and energy links while promoting environmental and labor standards — […]

Protection of OFWs, $140-M investments secured: Duterte cites benefits of historic visits to Israel and Jordan

  (Eagle News) – The commitment to protect the country’s thousands of overseas Filipino Workers in Israel and Jordan, $140 million in combined investments, cooperation in the defense and the fight against terrorism, education, labor and human resources, as well as the respect and strengthened friendship for the Philippines by the two important Middle East countries. These were just among what Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte said were his achievements in his successful trip to Israel […]

Suu Kyi should have ‘resigned’ over Myanmar crackdown: UN rights chief

  BANGKOK, Thailand (AFP) — Nobel Laureate Aung San Suu Kyi should have resigned as Myanmar’s de facto leader over last year’s brutal army campaign against the Rohingya, the outgoing UN human rights chief has told the BBC. A military crackdown in response to attacks by Rohingya militants drove around 700,000 of the Muslim minority from Rakhine state into Bangladesh, where they have given accounts of widespread rape, murder and arson targeting their villages. Suu […]

Asian countries denounce ‘real threat’ of global trade war

  by Martin Abbugao Agence France Presse Singapore (AFP) — Asian countries have voiced concern about the potentially devastating impact of a US-China trade war, with ministers calling for the acceleration of talks for a gigantic Beijing-backed free-trade deal that excludes the United States. Fear that a simmering trade spat between the world’s top two economies could spiral into a full-blown trade war — with painful consequences for China’s neighbours — was among topics dominating […]

Cambodia ruling party claims ‘huge victory’ in vote decried as ‘sham’

by Suy Se and Joe Freeman Agence France Presse PHNOM PENH, Cambodia — Cambodia’s ruling party said it had won a landslide in Sunday’s one-horse election, an expected outcome after the main opposition was banned, paving the way for leader Hun Sen to prolong his 33 years in power. Hun Sen, who came to power in 1985 in a country still plagued by civil war, has cracked down on dissent in the run-up to this […]

Cambodians vote in ‘sham’ election without opposition

  by Suy Se and Joe Freeman Agence France Presse PHNOM PENH, Cambodia (AFP) — Cambodia voted Sunday in an election set to extend strongman premier Hun Sen’s 33 years in power after the only credible opposition was dissolved, effectively turning the country into a one-party state. Hun Sen, who came to power in 1985, has cracked down on dissent in the run-up to the poll, squeezing out civil society, independent media and his political […]

Cambodia PM hails ‘elimination’ of opposition, warns against poll boycott

  by Suy Se and Joe Freeman Agence France Presse PHNOM PENH, Cambodia (AFP) — Cambodia’s strongman Hun Sen on Friday hailed his success in eliminating “traitors” ahead of an election he cannot possibly lose, with no credible opposition left to challenge his 33-year rule of what has become a virtual one-party state Hun Sen addressed a huge crowd on the final day of campaigning ahead of Sunday’s vote, which promises to be an easy […]

President Duterte, PM Mahathir discuss need for closer defense, security cooperation in ASEAN region

  (Eagle News) – Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte and Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad discussed “matters of mutual interest” during their meeting on Monday afternoon, July 16, in Malaysia, a day after watching the fight and phenomenal win of Filipino boxing legend Manny Pacquiao. The two leaders met at 3 p.m.. Monday at the Malaysian Prime Minister’s office in Putrajaya where they “renewed and reaffirmed the long-standing brotherhood and friendship between the Philippines and Malaysia.” […]

Trump-Kim landmark summit could lead to peace and stability in Asia, says PHL Ambassador to US

  (Eagle News) – The landmark and historic summit between United States President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un would be good for the stability of Asia, according to Philippine Ambassador to the United States, Ambassador Jose Manuel Romualdez. Noting that the summit happened on June 12, the same day as the Philippines was commemorating its 120th Philippine Independence Day, Romualdez said that this meeting between the two leaders would “lead to […]

Malaysian top judges quit as new government cleans house

  KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (AFP) — Malaysia’s top two judges are resigning, court officials said Wednesday, the latest senior public servants to leave their posts since the former government lost power. Chief Justice Raus Sharif and appeals court president Zulkefli Ahmad Makinudin are to step down on July 31, a judiciary statement said. They are the latest senior officials to quit, or be forced from, their jobs since Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad won a shock election […]