GENEVA, Apr 30 2012 (IPS) – After almost a decade of major economic transformation, the Lao People’s Democratic Republic is on the brink of World Trade Organisation (WTO) membership. But the small country’s Herculean effort to join the exclusive trade club is a reminder to the ten other least developed countries (LDCs) now seeking membership of the cumbersome process involved.
Sixty-three human rights groups in South-east Asia have issued an open letter to the 45th ASEAN Foreign Ministers’ Meeting, expressing their call that the ASEAN Human Rights Declaration “will not be lower than international human rights norms and standards”. The draft declaration, the subject of criticism by rights groups who say it is too weak, is set to be adopted at the ASEAN summit in November 2012. The text of the open letter follows.
On ASEAN’s ‘birthday’ on Aug. 8, 2012, Moe Thuzar of the ASEAN Studies Centre reflects on the high and low points of the organisation as well as the importance of linking its goals and work to the everyday lives of its constituency.
There is a lot of discussion in the media and public space about ASEAN, but there are also many misconceptions about the regional organisation, says Rodolfo Severino, Head of the ASEAN Studies Centre.
SINGAPORE, Aug 10 (Straits Times) – The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) turned 45 on Wednesday. Asean has come a long way, first as a grouping emerging from the Cold War, and now supposedly the world’s most successful regional organization after the European Union.
BANGKOK, Aug 10 (Bangkok Post) – For the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, turning 45 is hard to do. Its perennial and cliched crossroads may soon become a precipice unless remedial collective action among the group is taken to repair recent setbacks ahead of its summit in November.
PHILIPPINES, Aug 11 (The Philippine Star) – The 45th year of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations will be remembered for the first-ever failure of the regional grouping to come up with a communiqué at the end of its ministerial meeting in the host country Cambodia. No regional grouping is free of disagreements, and there have been violent incidents between certain ASEAN member states. But for the most part, ASEAN has shown solidarity as the grouping, which originally started with five members including the Philippines, grew to its current membership of 10 and engaged other countries as dialogue partners and observers.
In a joint statement released on April 8th (full text below), over 130 local, national and regional civil society organizations across the ASEAN region called on more consultations in drafting the ASEAN human rights declaration.
BANGKOK, Apr 12 (IPS) – Long Southeast Asia’s black sheep, Myanmar is
enjoying an image change following its landmark Apr. 1 by-elections.
Tongues are now wagging about the region’s new beacon of hope for
BURMA, Apr 3 (Irrawaddy Magazine) – The Association of Southeast Asian
Nations (Asean) agreed on Monday to back Burma’s call for the European
Union to lift sanctions on the country, a day after a by-election in
which Burmese democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi’s party won a
PHNOM PENH, Apr 4 (ANTARA News) – The 20th ASEAN Summit held in the Cambodian capital of Phnom Penh has officially ended, following a closing session led by Prime Minister Hun Sen on Wednesday.
VIENTIANE, Feb 1 (IPS) – A landmark concert featuring artistes from
eight of the ten South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) took place here on
Jan. 21, in an effort to build a regional community through the common
language of music.
BANGKOK, Apr 9 (Bangkok Post) – To say that last week’s summit of the Association of Southeast Nations was disappointing is an understatement. Not too much was expected when the 10 presidents and prime ministers met in Phnom Penh. But even less was actually achieved.
Making Development A Story within ASEAN SINGAPORE – How to create space in South-east Asian media for reporting on social and development issues in the context of Association of South-east Asian Nations (ASEAN) regionalism was the focus of an experts’ meeting organised in early November by IPS Asia-Pacific, with the ASEAN Studies Centre as co-organiser. […]