Each year, Thai kids can fully celebrate their childhood on only one day — the second Saturday of the year — which this year falls on Jan. 11.
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's recent visit to the Yasukuni Shrine sent mixed signals to the region. Up in the north, it immediately deepened mistrust and increased the tension in Japan's relations with China and South Korea. The two countries, members of ASEAN-plus-three, have condemned it in the strongest terms — even the U.S., Japan's strongest ally, was not too happy about it. Unavoidably in the months ahead, ASEAN will have to be ready to cope with any possible fallout from these entanglements.
In the beginning, there were Xi and Li. Now, after a year, all that people see and hear about is Xi, leaving many to wonder where Li is.
With global powers shifting from the West to the East, China is clearly asserting itself in world affairs in a variety of ways. On territorial disputes, Xiying Lei, a Ph.D. candidate at the Asia Pacific College of Australia National University, states that China's strategy is to “make the outside world know that it is a 'great power.'”
How can Japan untangle the row with China over the Senkaku Islands?
The end of the year is the time to reflect on the past and the beginning of the year is time to reflect on the future.
At the beginning of the 21st Century, the much heralded “Asian Century” was the compass for global policymakers to set their future directions. They know the region will dominate the next 100 years.
2014/1/4, 1 Comment
Thai foreign policy in the past year has been dominated by the performance of Surapong Tovichakchaikul. The foreign minister has also doubled as deputy prime minister and, since early December, as chief of the Center for the Administration of Peace and Order (CAPO), dealing with the anti-government protests.
South Korean President Park Geun-hye began the new year reiterating her economic and social targets and calling on the nation to come together, but the outlook for the political arena appears anything but harmonious.
During this past summer, regional fishing territory disputes became a major issue in Taiwan, reaching further than the usual diplomatic circles. On April 10, 2013, Taiwan signed a fishing agreement with Japan after enduring 17 years of on-again, off-again negotiations.
2014/1/3, 1 Comment