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  • Deal or No Deal? Cambodia Elections Saga Continues

    Hun Sen, prime minister of Cambodia, and opposition leader Sam Rainsy met last week in an attempt to reconcile differences over allegedly rigged July 2013 elections. Despite their lengthy discussion, no deal was inked. Since the elections, the opposition Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP) has called for a transparent review … More

    Terrorist Arrests in India Mark Victory Ahead of Elections

    Several members of the Indian Mujahideen (IM) terrorist group have been arrested in the lead up to elections in India. Suspected IM leader Tehsin Akthar—the alleged architect of the deadly Patna bombing, which targeted Indian prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi last October—is chief among the individuals apprehended. The recent arrest … More

    Asia Pivot Should Be More Than Just Rhetoric and Good Intentions

    President Obama’s impending trip to Asia in April is an opportunity for the U.S. to go beyond mere rhetorical commitment to the Asia pivot. At a recent event at The Heritage Foundation, experts Randy Shriver of Project 2049 and Heritage fellows Bruce Klingner and Walter Lohman laid the framework for … More

    Indonesia: Elections an Opportunity for Improved Governance

    Upcoming parliamentary and presidential elections in Indonesia are heating up after the Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle’s (PDI-P) announcement that Jakarta’s popular governor, Joko Widodo (known as “Jokowi”), will run for president. As the vastly favored candidate, Jokowi’s popularity offers promise for consolidation of democracy. Improvement in Indonesia’s democratic credentials … More

    Sri Lanka: Most Economically Free South Asian Nation

    Sri Lanka has maintained its position as the most economically free nation in South Asia, according to the 2014 Index of Economic Freedom. The country has a sustained annual growth rate of 6 percent since 2010 and continues to pursue economic reforms and liberalization. Despite a dip in its global … More

    The State of Economic Freedom in Asia

    Asia is home to some of the economically freest and least free nations in the world, according to the recently released Index of Economic Freedom. The Index, published yearly by The Heritage Foundation and The Wall Street Journal, surveys 186 countries and gives each country a score based on 10 … More

    Burma: ASEAN Can’t Ignore Persecution of Religious Minorities

    As Burma assumes its role as chair of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), its ability to credibly deal with serious human rights issues is in serious question. Burma has come out with a statement that, under its chairmanship, ASEAN will not address concerns about the persecution of the … More

    Southeast Asia and Its Press Freedom Woes

    A Burmese court recently sentenced a journalist to jail for purported defamation, coarse language, and trespassing. The journalist, Ma Khine, was reporting on corruption and video piracy when she allegedly got into an argument during an agreed-upon interview with lawyer Aye Aye Phyo, who asked her to leave his home … More

    U.S. Should Support Postponing Elections in Bangladesh

    The Bangladesh government’s announcement late last month that parliamentary elections would be held on January 5 has been met with much opposition. Current Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and the ruling Awami League party eliminated the constitutional requirement to install a neutral caretaker government to oversee elections, prompting the major opposition … More

    Karzai Putting Afghanistan’s Future at Risk

    Afghan President Hamid Karzai is stubbornly refusing to sign the Bilateral Security Agreement (BSA) that will guarantee a residual U.S. force presence remains in Afghanistan post-2014. In doing so, he is ignoring the advice of U.S. and Iraqi officials and his own country’s tribal leaders—and jeopardizing the security of Afghanistan … More