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November 24, 2020

Southeast Asia
COVID-19 Sparks Democratic Regression in South and Southeast Asia

South and Southeast Asia have demonstrated mixed results in combating the coronavirus pandemic, yet COVID-19 has been a political boon for illiberal leaders in the region. In fact, South and Southeas…

U.S. President Donald Trump observes as Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi speaks during the "Namaste Trump" event at Sardar Patel Gujarat Stadium, in Ahmedabad, India, on February 24, 2020.

November 19, 2020

Southeast Asia
Crackdown Looming for Thai Protests

Pavin Chachavalpongpun is associate professor at Kyoto University’s Center for Southeast Asian Studies. Thais woke up on Thursday to breaking news: Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha had issued a st…

Demonstrators are seen as water cannons are being used during an anti-government protest as lawmakers debate on constitution change, outside the parliament in Bangkok, Thailand, on November 17, 2020.

November 16, 2020

Trade
The RCEP Signing and Its Implications

Over the weekend, 15 Asian states, including China, signed the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership. The deal provides a major signal to investors that the region is still committed to multila…

ASEAN leaders are seen on a screen as they attend the 4th Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership Summit as part of the 37th ASEAN Summit in Hanoi, Vietnam on November 15, 2020.

November 9, 2020

Southeast Asia
Myanmar’s Election: NLD Seems to Win Sizable Victory

On Sunday, Myanmar held its first national elections since 2015, when Aung San Suu Kyi’s National League for Democracy (NLD) won a smashing victory in the first free and fair national elections in th…

A supporter of National League for Democracy (NLD) holds two portraits of Myanmar State Counselor Aung San Suu Kyi as people gather to celebrate at party headquarters after the general election in Yangon, Myanmar, on November 9, 2020.

October 26, 2020

Southeast Asia
Myanmar’s National Elections: What to Expect

Myanmar is set to hold general elections next month, for the second time since the end of military rule in 2011. The last election, in 2015, ushered Aung San Suu Kyi’s National League for Democracy (…

Myanmar State Counsellor and Foreign Minister Aung San Suu Kyi leaves after paying her respects to her late father during a ceremony to mark the 73rd anniversary of Martyrs' Day in Yangon on July 19, 2020.

October 28, 2020

Southeast Asia
The Thai King Sends Messages Presaging Conflict in Thailand

Pavin Chachavalpongpun is associate professor at Kyoto University’s Center for Southeast Asian Studies. Three months have passed and the protests in Thailand have intensified. One of the main mess…

People show the three-fingered salute during a protest, in Bangkok, Thailand on October 26, 2020.

October 20, 2020

Southeast Asia
Is a Crackdown Looming for the Thai Protests?

Weeks of demonstrations in Thailand have now spread across the country. They continued over the weekend even as the authorities have arrested multiple protest leaders, issued an emergency decree bann…

Pro-democracy protesters show the three-finger salute during an anti-government protest, in Bangkok, Thailand on October 19, 2020.

October 15, 2020

Southeast Asia
Thailand Spiraling Toward Outright Conflict

In recent days, protests and counterprotests in Thailand have pushed the country closer to dangerous conflict between pro-democracy demonstrators, who also increasingly have called for monarchical re…

Pro-democracy demonstrators flash a three-finger salute as a royal motorcade drives past during a Thai antigovernment mass protest, on the 47th anniversary of the 1973 student uprising, in Bangkok, Thailand on October 14, 2020.

October 12, 2020

Coronavirus
The Time to Start Preparing for the Next Pandemic Is Now

The fallout from COVID-19 demonstrates that pandemics have broader economic, political and security implications that require multilateral attention.

A health worker in full personal protective equipment stands over a patient with a swab testing her for the novel coronavirus in the Beirut suburbs in Lebanon

September 21, 2020

Southeast Asia
Thai Protests Focus More Explicitly on the Monarchy

Pavin Chachavalpongpun is associate professor at Kyoto University’s Center for Southeast Asian Studies. After weeks of reformist protests in Bangkok and other parts of the country, Thailand’s demo…

Pro-democracy protesters display the three-fingered salute while singing the national anthem during a mass rally to call for the ouster of Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha's government and reforms in the monarchy, in Bangkok, Thailand, on September 20, 2020.