Foreign Minister Retno LP Marsudi will seek to strengthen Indonesia's existing strategic partnership with the United States, following heartening signs from the White House regarding its ongoing commitment in the Asia-Pacific. "Indonesia is ready to fortify its [ties] with the US through mutually beneficial cooperation," Retno said in a statement upon her arrival in Washington DC, late on Wednesday local time.
Despite public diplomacy efforts by Pacific Alliance and ASEAN members alike emphasizing the desirability of upscaling their relations, actual progress will face challenges on several fronts. [...] Nonetheless, the current context offers the Pacific Alliance and ASEAN an outstanding opportunity to build up their partnership.
The Trump administration’s real ASEAN test is whether it can preserve the U.S. role as a capable and willing Pacific power seeking to advance greater security, prosperity, and democracy in the Asia-Pacific while working with Southeast Asian states on common challenges in a way that advances U.S. interests but still preserves their autonomy and freedom of action.
As the Association of Southeast Asian Nations celebrates its 50th anniversary, the complexity of the internal and external environment is severely testing its approach to cooperative security that rests, above all, on preserving the sovereignty of each of the 10 member states.
Under a new foreign policy it adopted last year, Taiwan is seeking to woo more foreign students, including from India, to study in its institutes of higher learning. “The central focus of our New Southbound policy is to strengthen ties with Southeast Asia and India,” Rebecca Lan, Deputy Director General at the Department of International and Cross-Strait Education in Taiwan’s Ministry of Education, said during an interaction with a group of visiting journalists from the region here.
The training topics include China’s political, cultural, media and economic studies amongst others. Other activities will include touring China, covering major political activities at the National People’s Congress and other major events like the BRICS economic summit slated. The development studies and media exchange is being organized by Renmin University of China (RUC) based in the capital, Beijing.
Core to Donald Trump’s appeal, both at home and abroad, is that he doesn’t seem to care how he’s supposed to behave. He certainly doesn’t fuss over offending Chinese nationalist sensibilities. This perhaps explains, in part, his curious adventure in China-Taiwan diplomacy. [...] And now he’s walking back his moves on Taiwan: On his first phone call with President Xi Jinping, Trump said he would honor the One China policy.
As Russia’s foreign policy has become more assertive over the last few years, views of Russia in the West are becoming increasingly negative. But in Southeast Asia, a region whose history of relations with the USSR and Russia is fundamentally different from that of the West, perceptions of Russia today are markedly different. But can Russia make use of this positive image in its pursuit of soft power and influence?