Biden courts ASEAN nations
Islam News – The Association of Southeast Asian Nations met last weekend in Cambodia.
U.S. President Joe Biden appeared in person. He told leaders that the U.S. was committed to deepening “peace and prosperity throughout the region,” and he announced a series of initiatives in the region, including efforts to promote electric vehicle use, improve clean-water access and support female entrepreneurs.
But Biden’s efforts to counter China’s rise and promote human rights may face challenges. Cambodia’s government is increasingly suppressing democracy, which officials said Biden discussed. And many members of ASEAN are embracing economic ties with Beijing, despite China’s slowing growth.
At the summit, ASEAN leaders reiterated their strong ties with China while taking pains not to upset Biden. In a joint statement with China, Cambodia reiterated its support for the “One China Policy” — including opposition to independence for Taiwan.
Context: Before the summit, ASEAN elevated its relationship with the U.S. to what is called a comprehensive strategic partnership, putting it on the same footing as China and Australia.
India: The U.S. sees the world’s largest democracy as crucial to detaching global supply chains from the clutches of its unpredictable adversaries.
Source: The New York Times