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ASEAN Beat

‘One Vision, One Identity, One Community.’ That’s the ASEAN motto. But what’s the reality? Our bloggers based around this diverse and strategically key region give you an insider’s perspective on politics, security and society in South-east Asia.

Indonesia-Middle East Relations Set to Bloom Under Prabowo

Indonesia-Middle East Relations Set to Bloom Under Prabowo

By Muhammad Zulfikar Rakhmat
The former general, who spent time in voluntary exile in Jordan, is poised to build on the progress made by President Joko Widodo.

Thailand to Ban Recreational Marijuana Use By Year’s End, Minister Says

Thailand to Ban Recreational Marijuana Use By Year’s End, Minister Says

By Sebastian Strangio
The move comes less than two years after the Thai government became the first Southeast Asian country to legalize the cultivation and consumption of marijuana.
What to Expect From the ASEAN-Australia Special Summit

What to Expect From the ASEAN-Australia Special Summit

By Sebastian Strangio
The March 4-6 summit seeks to build on the progress that has taken place in ASEAN-Australia relations under Prime Minister Albanese's Labor government.

Indonesia’s Jokowi Confers Honorary Promotion On Likely Successor

Indonesia’s Jokowi Confers Honorary Promotion On Likely Successor

By Sebastian Strangio
The promotion of Prabowo Subianto to the rank of four-star general has drawn further attention to his controversial military career under Suharto's New Order regime.

Philippine Lawmaker Demands Answers From Singapore Over Reported Taylor Swift Deal

Philippine Lawmaker Demands Answers From Singapore Over Reported Taylor Swift Deal

By Sebastian Strangio
Rep. Joey Salceda claims that Singapore's alleged exclusivity arrangement with the pop icon's promoter "runs contrary" to ASEAN's consensus-based relations.

Malaysia to Sign Free Trade Pact with UAE in June, Official Says

Malaysia to Sign Free Trade Pact with UAE in June, Official Says

By Sebastian Strangio
The country is on track to becoming the fifth nation, and the third in Southeast Asia, to sign a Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement with Abu Dhabi.

Why Are Southeast Asia’s Young Voters Turning to Illiberal Populists?

Why Are Southeast Asia’s Young Voters Turning to Illiberal Populists?

By Imran Said and Alexander Berghaus
Recent elections have upended the assumption that young people are inherently more progressive than their elders.
Indonesia’s PDI-P Says That It Will Seek Election Investigation

Indonesia’s PDI-P Says That It Will Seek Election Investigation

By Sebastian Strangio
A senior party official says that the election, which was won decisively by Defense Minister Prabowo Subianto, was tainted by “abuse of power."

Cambodia’s Buddhist Great Supreme Patriarch Dies, Aged 92

Cambodia’s Buddhist Great Supreme Patriarch Dies, Aged 92

By Sebastian Strangio
Tep Vong, who helped revive Buddhism after the fall of the Khmer Rouge, had close and long-standing connections to the ruling Cambodian People's Party.

Cambodia’s Opposition Needs to Take a Sabbatical

Cambodia’s Opposition Needs to Take a Sabbatical

By David Hutt
Opposition parties should take a page out of the ruling CPP's book and begin a process of generational renewal.

Why Vietnam’s Escalating Anti-Corruption Campaign Might Backfire

Why Vietnam’s Escalating Anti-Corruption Campaign Might Backfire

By Mai Truong
By drawing public attention to high-level graft, the "blazing furnace" campaign could inadvertently prompt more searching questions about the nature of communist rule.
Thaksin and Move Forward: Downplaying Their Problems?

Thaksin and Move Forward: Downplaying Their Problems?

By Tita Sanglee
The controversial release of the former prime minister has presented the progressive MFP with a political opportunity.

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