Asia Unbound
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Asia Unbound

CFR fellows and other experts assess the latest issues emerging in Asia today.

Latest Post

Podcast: Joshua Wong and Brian Leung on Hong Kong's Pro-democracy Movement

Ever since protests gained traction in late spring, Hong Kong has been a focal point for international attention. The protests, which drew approximately two million participants at one point, have continued amid reports of police brutality and threats of mainland intervention. Although Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam stated that she will withdraw the extradition bill that spurred the protests, the protesters’ demands have grown since their inception and the demonstrations show no sign of ending soon. Joshua Wong and Brian Leung have been two of the movement’s most vocal leaders. Wong serves as the Secretary General of Demosistō, a Hong Kong pro-democracy political party, and Leung garnered attention for removing his face mask while leading protests inside the Hong Kong Legislative Council in July 2019. In mid-September, Wong and Leung traveled to the United States to meet with U.S. officials to press their case. In this podcast, they sit down with Dr. Elizabeth Economy to discuss the roots of their political activism, their thoughts on the protest’s current status, and their goals for their tour abroad. Read More

September 4, 2019

Southeast Asia
Authoritarian Modernism in East Asia: A Review

Over the past decade, democracy has regressed in much of Asia, though there are notable exceptions including Malaysia and Taiwan. Southeast Asia has witnessed a reversal in Thailand, weakening institutions and norms in Bangladesh, India, and the Philippines, backsliding in Cambodia and even to some extent Indonesia, and sustained authoritarian rule in Laos and Vietnam, among other examples.

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September 4, 2019

Southeast Asia
What Happens if Rohingya Stay in Bangladesh Forever?

Earlier this month, the Myanmar government embarked upon a new plan to begin repatriating Rohingya who had fled Rakhine State after waves of brutal violence there.

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August 27, 2019

North Korea
Challenges Pile Up on U.S.-South Korea Alliance Agenda

Summer 2019 has been a watershed moment for trends that threaten to compromise South Korea’s position in Northeast Asia.

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