ASEAN


Recent statements by Malaysia’s Foreign Minister recognizing the regional significance of the plight of Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar are a step in the right direction, but ASEAN leaders must take concrete action to address the growing crisis, said ASEAN Parliamentarians for Human Rights (APHR) this week in a statement issued April 30.
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Commander-in-Chief of Myanmar’s Defense Services Senior-General Min Aung Hlaing has stressed the need for cooperation of medical corps of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) during natural disaster, official media reported Thursday.
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Representatives of the ASEAN People’s Forum have expressed concerns over a rash of problems in the Southeast Asian region that seriously inhibit their dreams of society becoming “people centred.” (more…)

Southeast Asia and the European Union (EU) agreed on Sunday to take steps toward resuming stalled talks on a free-trade agreement between the two regions. (more…)

Southeast Asian lawmakers on Wednesday urged their leaders to discuss Myanmar’s Rohingya crisis at their upcoming summit in Malaysia, saying it has led to the highest outflow of asylum seekers by sea in the region since the Vietnam War.
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Leaders within the Association of Southeast Asian Nations need to close the income gap in the region in order to ensure sustainability of countries’ economic and free trade pacts, Indonesian Bank Mandiri’s chief executive said April 20, according to a Jakarta Globe report.
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Asian leaders have gathered in China for a four-day summit aiming to set the economic agenda during what is sure to be a crucial year for Burma.
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Nearly two years after the United States lifted its economic sanctions on Myanmar (also called Burma), the ruling military regime continues to repress the country’s people. Although the rapprochement between the United States and Myanmar had been proffered on the promise of economic, democratic, and social reform, the national outlook only grew darker in subsequent years as Myanmar President Thein Sein cracked down on the press, freedom of assembly, and religious minorities.
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Malaysia and Myanmar have agreed that the Islamic State threat is real and IS may try to instill its ideology in hotspots in ASEAN, reports the Malay Mail on February 20.
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Myanmar will be pressing for a common visa for all ASEAN countries during Malaysia’s tenure as chair of the regional organisation, says head of the government’s visa department. (more…)

Another year has brought further delay to a region-wide agreement on the migrant workers question. (more…)

Malaysia will kick-start its chairmanship of ASEAN in 2015 by hosting the ASEAN Foreign Ministers’ Retreat in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, Malaysia from January 27 to 28, according the ASEAN secretariat in a press release received on January 2. (more…)

Burma has become a full member of the Asean Infrastructure Fund, the last country of the regional grouping to gain shareholder status, the fund announced on Thursday. (more…)

Two Myanmar nationals wanted by the Malaysian police to assist in the investigation into the murder of several fellow nationals on Malaysia’s Penang island are believed to have fled the state, according to The Star on December 17. (more…)

Burmese nationals seeking work or who hope to visit Malaysia will be screened for criminal records, the Malaysian Home Minister has announced. (more…)

52 Burmese nationals, sentenced to yearlong prison terms for using forged visas in an attempt to enter Malaysia, have thanked embassy staff in Kuala Lumpur as they returned to Burma yesterday. (more…)

Police in Malaysia have arrested 20 people in a widening investigation into the murder of at least 18 Burmese nationals in the northern state of Penang since January. (more…)

Myanmar will be one of several countries under the spotlight for their efforts to crack down on the manufacture and trade in illegal drugs at a regional ASEAN meeting being held in Jakarta. (more…)

Police in Malaysia investigating the murders of 23 Myanmar nationals say their deaths are linked to communal tensions in Rakhine State, a Malaysian news website has reported.

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The ASEAN Summit is finished. The international visitors have moved on, Naypyidaw hoteliers can adjust their room rates to reasonable levels again, and the Myanmar government can breathe a sigh of relief. (more…)

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