Academic journal article Southeast Asian Affairs

Foreword

Academic journal article Southeast Asian Affairs

Foreword

Article excerpt

In 2010 there was good recovery in Southeast Asia from the global economic crisis of 2008-09, with economic performance returning to pre-crisis levels. However, the security environment was less benign. There were troubling developments in the South China Sea and more tensions in U.S .-China relations. The year also saw more active U.S. diplomacy in the region as well as a U.S. decision to seek membership of the East Asia Summit (EAS). Its admission to the EAS in 2011, together with Russia, became a virtual certainty.

The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) held two summit meetings and also the inaugural ASEAN Defence Ministers Meeting Plus Eight, the eight being the Defence Ministers of Australia, China, India, Japan, New Zealand, Russia, South Korea, and the United States. ASEAN was also busy with efforts to bring about closer economic integration. Armed clashes between Thailand and Cambodia on their common border marred somewhat ASEAN's record of peaceful interstate relations.

Elections were held in Myanmar and the Philippines. The former, as expected, resulted in a parliament and government dominated by military interests. However, it still constituted a break from the political stalemate that had existed from 1990 and held out the prospect of gradual change for the better. …

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