India and ASEAN / East Asia

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parikh
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Postby parikh » 02 Dec 2007 09:09

Malays personally are an easy going lot , but are talibanic on the issue of race and religion . Discrimination is entrenched in the system ,from electoral constituencies, housing loans ,jobs ,schools etc.

Indians are bitter lot,spoke to some old timers and they said that the indian labour built the country infra from scratch , and their contribution is never acknowledged.
Most malays are ignorant about the previous Indian presence in Malaysia

Malays consist of various tribes ,the biggest tribe Bugis migrated from Indonesia of late (last 400 years)

The whole problem starts with the British ,chinese communists started an independence movement for malayasia after 1945 ,british encouraged malays to counter it hence the basis for bumiputera policy (ironically is a sanskrit word)

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Postby Rudranathh » 08 Dec 2007 23:10

India, Cambodia to enhance bilateral defence ties
8 Dec 2007,PTI
NEW DELHI: India and Cambodia on Saturday decided to enhance defence cooperation and agreed to transfer jailed persons as they discussed ways to further strengthen bilateral ties in various fields.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and his Cambodian counterpart Hun Sen held wide-ranging talks covering several sectors including agriculture, banking, oil exploration and water resources besides defence.

The two sides signed seven agreements after the talks on the second day of Hun's four-day state visit here.

India will extend a Line of Credit of USD 35.2 million to Cambodia at a fixed rate of interest of 1.75 percent repayable over 20 years.

An agreement on transfer of sentenced persons provides for such prisoners incarcerated in the other country to return to their homeland to serve the remainder of prison term.

The MoU on cooperation in the field of water resources management will cover collaboration and joint activities in the sector. It envisages the exchange of experts, organisation of training programmes and establishment of a joint working group to monitor cooperation in the area.

The two countries also signed an agreement that facilitates regular Foreign Office consolations at the vice ministerial level to review all aspects of bilateral relations and exchange of views on issues of mutual interest.

The leaders also agreed upon a work plan on cooperation in the field of agriculture and allied sectors.

An MoU was also signed on cooperation and technical assistance between ONGC Videsh Limited and the Cambodian National Petroleum Authority.



Cambodia calls for more Indian investment
December 08, 2007
[quote]
New Delhi, December 8: Cambodia has invited Indian investments in manufacturing, services, infrastructure and human resources development and said it would export to India some agricultural products in which it is competitive.

Speaking at an interaction with the Indian industry in Delhi on Saturday jointly hosted by the apex bodies, FICCI, Assocham and CII, the Cambodian prime minister, Samdech Akka Moha Sena Pai Techo Hun Sen said : “we are strongly determined to attract as much as possible foreign direct investment (FDIs), including that from India.â€

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Postby Victor » 09 Dec 2007 07:15

Re: Cambodia, the Khasis of Meghalaya are a branch of the Mon-Khmer people native to Cambodia and speak the language. It would be interesting to witness the interaction when the planned Asian Highway opens and mobility becomes the norm. Ninety percent of Cambodians are Buddhist and ninety percent of Khasis are Christian.

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Postby Sanjay M » 17 Dec 2007 01:08

Thaksin's supporters are making a comeback in Thailand:

http://www.time.com/time/magazine/artic ... 28,00.html

Good -- he was tough on the Islamists.
That worthless general who overthrew him hasn't done anything good. The militancy has only worsened.

I'm disgusted that armymen can give support to an usurper who is soft on insurgency and national security.

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Postby Neshant » 17 Dec 2007 10:22

Vietnamese stage second anti-China rally over disputed islands

http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/vietnamprot ... fdeTkDW7oF

The two archipelagos, considered strategic outposts in the South China Sea, have potential oil and gas reserves and rich fishing grounds.

The disputes stir strong passions in Vietnam, which remembers a millennium of Chinese rule and fought its last border war with China in 1979.

The Spratlys, more than 100 islets, reefs and atolls, are claimed in full or part by China, Vietnam, the Philippines, Malaysia, Brunei and Taiwan.

The Paracels -- which Chinese troops took from South Vietnamese forces in 1974 -- are also claimed by Vietnam and Taiwan.

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Postby Sanjay M » 23 Dec 2007 02:27

I dunno why an Atlanticist mouthpiece like The Economist is no longer supporting the Thailand coup, but suddenly they're

Comparing Thailand to Pakistan

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Postby putnanja » 01 Jan 2008 02:42

Start getting used to DSP: Defence Services Provider

[quote]...
So, as China looks to spread its wings, India is looking to match up, but in a different way. Consider this:

• Vietnam: Nearly 50 officers have been trained in Indian military institutions in past two to three years. Defence Minister A K Anthony just visited Vietnam and it was agreed that India will train Vietnamese Army for peacekeeping operations. Vitenam wants even more specialized training and is looking for spares from India with technical help for its anti-submarine ships.

• Indonesia: For the last two years, a batch of Indonesian Army personnel train at Counter Insurgency and Jungle Warfare School, Warangte. India sends faculty now to the Indonesian staff college. And the latest: Jakarta is looking at HAL for maintenance of its Sukhoi fleet.

• Malaysia: Under an agreement reached this year, Indian pilots will be deputed to train Malaysian pilots on SU 30 MKI aircraft. A ground and technical crew is currently under training in India. A regular batch of officers train at the Naval Academy here for the past couple of years.

• Singapore: Agreement signed to lease Kalaikunda airbase for few months in a year for training purposes. Annual training at Artillery ranges in Deolali near Nasik. Singapore will pay for the use of this facility.

• Qatar: A flurry of recent activity saw a high-level team visit India this month and visit several defence locations. The purpose is to hire firing ranges for artillery and mechanized forces. Also, Qatar has placed a request for fixed vacancies in higher military education institutions.

• Oman: A dozen officers trained at the Naval Academy this year and the number is likely to increase. And India has got berthing facilities and docking rights in Oman along with permission to keep “warlike storesâ€

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Postby Murugan » 15 Jan 2008 10:15

Thai soldier beheaded, 7 others killed

http://www.cnbc.com/id/6354077/for/cnbc

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Postby Sanjay M » 31 Mar 2008 04:31

Dith Pran is dead:

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/03/31/nyregion/31dith.html

http://www.boston.com/news/nation/artic ... 206883560/

He was a reporter who documented the Cambodian genocide committed by the Chinese-backed Khmer Rouge. Another Han imperialist project.

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Postby putnanja » 10 Apr 2008 02:39

India, Singapore Army to seal pact

[quote] Singapore, April 9: India and Singapore are close to sealing a long-term co-operation agreement between the two countries’ Armed Forces, which will allow the Singapore Army to use the Indian Army’s training infrastructure for its own forces.

India’s High Commissioner to Singapore Dr S Jaishankar told The Indian Express, “India and Singapore’s naval forces have a fairly old relationship and Air Forces entered a long term training pact last October. Now this will expand to all three services, as we expect an agreement between the armed forces sometime soon.â€

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Postby Karan Dixit » 05 May 2008 09:53


More heading to booming India for work


http://thestar.com.my/news/story.asp?fi ... 4&sec=asia

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Re: India and ASEAN

Postby Avinash R » 19 Jul 2008 22:15

More troops sent in Thai-Cambodia temple dispute
http://in.news.yahoo.com/137/20080719/3 ... -te_1.html
Sat, Jul 19 06:05 PM

By Nopporn Wong-Anan

KANTARALAK, Thailand (Reuters) - Thailand and Cambodia sent troops and heavy guns on Saturday to their disputed border, where hundreds of soldiers faced off for a fifth day over an ancient Hindu temple.

Despite the military build-up, both sides said they were ready to negotiate an end to the stand-off.

The dispute has raised investor fears of a major confrontation. Thailand's main stock index has fallen more than 23 percent since anti-government street protests in Bangkok began in late May, and could drop further if border tensions get worse, analysts said.

The Preah Vihear temple, perched on a jungle-clad escarpment that forms a natural boundary, has been a source of tension since the International Court of Justice ruled in 1962 it belonged to Cambodia, a decision that still rankles Thais.

The listing of Preah Vihear as a World Heritage site this month triggered a political uproar in Thailand, stoked by groups opposed to Prime Minister Samak Sundaravej whom they accuse of being a proxy of former Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra, who was ousted in a 2006 coup.

The diplomatic sparring between Bangkok and Phnom Penh has intensified ahead of high-level talks on Monday involving the two countries' defence ministers.

Thailand summoned Cambodia's ambassador on Friday to respond to Prime Minister Hun Sen's charge that Thai troops had "encroached" on Cambodian territory" and that the situation was "worsening".

In a letter to Hun Sen, Samak said Cambodian troops and buildings on the disputed 4.6 sq km area were a "violation of Thailand's sovereignty and territorial integrity".

He added his government was "resolved to seek a just and peaceful solution to the situation".

Cambodia has asked the United Nations' Security Council to discuss the border dispute with Thailand, Thai Government Spokesman Wichianchot Sukchotrat told Reuters.

"We have been informed by our ambassador to the U.N. that Cambodia has filed a complaint over the dispute to the U.N.," Wichianchot said.

NATIONALIST FERVOUR

In Cambodia, Preah Vihear has become a key issue in the run-up to next Sunday's election as Hun Sen's ruling party and the opposition vie for votes by stoking nationalist fervour.

"They should focus on issues like fighting poverty and corruption instead of using Preah Vihear for their political interests," said Kek Galabru, head of the LICAHDO rights group.

Lieutenant General Sujit Sitthiprapha, commander of Thailand's Second Army, said more troops were sent to the border after Cambodia reinforced its forces at the temple.

A Reuters witness saw a convoy of eight Thai army trucks ferry several hundred soldiers to the border. In another convoy, trucks towed heavy artillery.

"If things escalate, we can use those troops right away," Sujit said, although he added the soldiers at the temple "were still talking to each other".

Thailand estimates it is facing 1,200 Cambodian troops in and around the temple, although Phnom Penh disputes that figure.

Chea Mon, Cambodia's military commander at Preah Vihear, said the situation was calm at the temple where his men faced about 400 Thai soldiers.

"We are protecting our borders. We will leave it to government leaders to solve this issue," he said by telephone.

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Re: India and ASEAN

Postby ramana » 26 Aug 2008 22:19

X-posting...
Philip wrote:A thread for news from all the ASEAN countries like S'pore,malaysia,Thailand,Indonesia,etc.

Current Thai chaos.
http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/w ... 611449.ece

Protesters storm Thai PM's compound

Anti-government protesters broke down barricades and forced their way into the compound of government house, Bangkok

Richard Lloyd Parry, Asia Editor

Royalist demonstrators swarmed government buildings and a state television station in Bangkok today in an attempt to drive from office its democratically elected government for the second time in two years.

Hundreds of demonstrators, many of them carrying the yellow flags of the Thai monarchy, entered the official compound of Thailand’s prime minister, Samak Sundaravej, as police opened the gates and stood by. Another group stormed the National Broadcasting Services of Thailand (NBT), with masks, clubs and iron bars, and forced the station from the air for an hour until being rounded up by police.

As many as 30,000 people from the right wing People’s Alliance for Democracy (PAD) took part in the protests at five government buildings, demanding Mr Samak’s resignation and the replacement of Thailand’s democracy with an appointed parliament which would exclude the poor rural voters who have transformed Thailand’s politics in the past seven years. The demonstrations were the most dramatic since September 2006 when a peaceful military coup drove from power the country’s last democratically elected prime minister, Thaksin Shinawatra.

“I will not resign, I will stay to protect this country,” Mr Samak said in a nationally broadcast television address, after being forced to hold a cabinet meeting in a military base. “Police will use all means to restore normality as soon as possible. Police will take decisive action against the protesters. … The government has given them a lot of time, and now government restraint is almost over.

Related Links
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“I ask all the protesters who have been blockading or occupying government offices that you still have a chance to withdraw and go back to your homes. The military will not allow them to take control of the country. However, it is not the time yet for military force.”

But Mr Samak’s show of magnanimous forbearance masks the damage that he has suffered as a result of the protests, which were launched in earnest three months ago. He was elected last December as leader of the People Power Party (PPP), and made no secret of his loyalty to Mr Thaksin, the most popular, but most divisive, prime minister in Thailand’s history.

Mr Thaksin’s enemies, mainly among the urban middle class, accused him of using his great wealth to compromise human rights, freedom of the press, and of undermining the constitutional checks and balances on his own power. But he was adored by rural Thais, who felt themselves to be unrepresented by Thailand’s mainstream political establishment.

He was deposed in a military coup in 2006 and went into exile in London, where he became proprietor of Manchester City Football Club. But he appeared to be heading back to power last December after a general election which was decisively won by Mr Samak and the PPP.

But Mr Thaksin faced criminal charges for alleged fraud perpetrated during his period in office. After his wife, Potjaman, was convicted by a Thai court, Mr Thaksin abandoned his attempts to return to power. This month he skipped bail and flew back to exile in London.

This development, and the decision by the Thai attorney general to attempt to extradite Mr Thaksin from London, took much of the pressure off Mr Samak, who could no longer be portrayed as a straightforward Thaksin toady. In some ways, today’s demonstrations represent a dramatic last hurrah by the PAD which has lost support among ordinary Thais for its confrontational tactics and the disruption which its demonstrations have brought to Bangkok’s already congested roads.

Even the opposition Democratic Party have spoken out in support of the government and against the PAD, which appears to have been hoping to provoke a violent, or even bloody, response form the government to galvanise still more outrage and opposition towards it.

“If we fail this time, we'll quit and surrender the country to them,” the PAD’s leader, Sondhi Limthongkul, said yesterday. “When people don't care about us, we won't have to care about them. Let others take over the country.”

The Bangkok stock fell 2.5 per cent on fears of violence or another coup, the latest slump since the PAD launched its campaign. But the head of the army, Gneneral Anupong Paochinda, ruled out the possibility of military intervention. “The army will not launch a coup,” he said. “The people can be assured. This is a task for the police."



What is the Indian angle to this story?

Philip
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Re: India and ASEAN

Postby Philip » 28 Aug 2008 18:41

Don't know.Silence emanates from Delhi as usual methinks.

More news.
http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2008/aug/28/thailand1

Thai protesters defy court order to leave PM's office
Samak says he will not use force against demonstrators calling for his resignationDavid Pallister and agencies guardian.co.uk, Thursday August 28 2008 10:15

Members of the anti-government People's Alliance for Democracy wave flags during a demonstration outside Government House in Bangkok. Photograph: Udo Weitz/EPA

Thousands of anti-government protesters who have occupied the Thai prime minister's office compound since Tuesday continued their defiant occupation today despite a court order instructing them to leave and arrest warrants for nine of their leaders.

The demonstrators from the rightwing People's Alliance for Democracy are calling on the prime minister, Samak Sundaravej, to resign, accusing him of being a proxy for former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra, who was ousted in a 2006 coup and, from his exile in Britain, faces several corruption cases.

Samak ordered 1,000 riot police to close in on the Government House compound yesterday but has deliberately refrained from ordering the use of force.

"I have a sword, but I have chosen not to use it," he told reporters from his temporary headquarters in a military compound in a north Bangkok. "It will be too dangerous."

He has accused the protesters of seeking to provoke a violent government response in the hope that the military will step in with another coup. The army commander has publically insisted that troops will not get involved.

Overnight, dozens of protesters wearing military fatigues and armed with golf clubs, batons and bamboo sticks stood guard around the compound. They locked most of the gates and built up makeshift barriers of tyres in anticipation of a police raid.

Thousands more protesters poured into the occupied area in response to the court order, and many formed a human chain overnight around the group's top leaders to prevent them from being taken away. Observers put the total number at around 10,000.

The atmosphere was a cross between a festival and a political rally as they listened to to folk music and vitriol against Samak and his elected government.

Retired general Chamlong Srimuang, an influential former politician and army officer and one of the top alliance leaders, said the protesters are doing nothing wrong.

"We are staging a protest because the government has made too many mistakes and has no legitimacy to run the country," he said.

But deputy police spokesman Maj Gen. Suraphol Tuanthong said the arrest warrants against the leaders were for insurrection, conspiracy, illegal assembly and refusing orders to disperse.

Insurrection, which is the legal equivalent of treason, carries a maximum penalty of death or life imprisonment.

Samak initially said he hoped the protesters would be out ahead of a ceremony on Saturday for Thailand's royal family. But today he proposed moving the royal procession to another site.

The climb-down only intensified speculation that Samak and the government are under pressure from anonymous PAD backers thought to come from the anti-Thaksin business elite, army or even the palace.

Revered King Bhumibol Adulyadej, who is officially above politics but who has intervened several times on a variety of sides during his six decades on the throne, has made no public pronouncements since the PAD launched its assault on Tuesday.

Alliance leaders said the group planned to appeal the court order to vacate the government compound. Chamlong said he and other leaders were ready to be arrested, but encouraged supporters to stay on the grounds.

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Re: India and ASEAN

Postby Vipul » 28 Aug 2008 19:36


ramana
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Re: India and ASEAN

Postby ramana » 29 Aug 2008 03:38

Highlights of the FTA with ASEAN

India finalises free trade agreement with ASEAN
The formal pact will be signed this December at the India-Asean summit at Bangkok, which is expected to be attended by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

The breakthrough comes after six years of negotiations for the trade pact, which is expected to add $12 billion by 2010 to trade between the participating nations.

A SNEAK-PEEK AT THE INDO-ASEAN FTA
* Reduces tariffs to zero in over 4,000 goods out of 5,000 that are traded. To be done in a phased manner over six years
* Partial reduction in import tariffs on highly sensitive farm goods. Tea, coffee — 45%, pepper — 50%, crude palm oil — 37.5%, refined palm oil — 45%
* Sensitive list of goods with partial duty cuts — 606 items, (Agricultural — 16, Textile — 304, Machinery & auto — 60, chemicals & plastic — 226)
* Negative list with no duty cuts — 489 items. (Agricultural — 302, Textile — 81, Machinery & auto — 52, chemicals & plastic — 32, Others — 22)
* Operational from Jan 1, 2009, Deal to be signed in December, 2008 at Bangkok
TRADE SNAPSHOT
* Bilateral Trade (Apr-Feb 07-08) — $34.38 billion which is 9.59% of India’s global trade
* Exports — $14.02 billion, Imports — $20.36 billion

The deal comes at a time when the Doha round of world trade talks are stalled.

The India-Asean FTA also comes at a time when China has already signed a similar pact with the economic bloc, as a result of which bilateral trade between them soared to over $171 billion last year.

Today, a joint statement issued after a meeting of trade ministers from India and key Asean members said the agreement will facilitate the creation of an open market for 1.7 billion people with a combined gross domestic product of $2.4 trillion.

During the course of the FTA talks, several issues had emerged as stumbling blocks, which included composition of the negative list (trade items that are outside the purview of duty cuts mandated by the pact) and tariff cuts on five highly sensitive farm products (see chart).

In fact, India had to compromise on several of these issues and accede to demands of nations like Vietnam, Indonesia and Malaysia. The sticking points included reducing the number of items in the negative list, reducing tariffs on highly sensitive farm products as well as Rules of Origin, norms that ensure that products from non-Asean countries like China are not routed to India at zero duty under the FTA.

Once the deal is operational — which is likely from January 2009 — the signatories to the pact will begin cutting import tariffs in a phased manner.

Normal goods will see import duties reduced to zero over six years, items in the sensitive list, will see partial tariff reductions over a longer period of time (see chart).

Talks for the India-Asean FTA began during the National Democratic Alliance government, with both sides initialling a framework agreement in late 2003. It is a measure of the importance that the current United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government has placed on expanding India’s role in trade with the Asean nations that the pact has been finalised.

The UPA had internal concerns over reducing tariffs on five highly sensitive farm products — tea, coffee, pepper crude, refine palm oil. In fact, UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi and minister of state for commerce Jairam Ramesh had last year written to Prime Minister Singh expressing concern over the possible adverse impact of such a move.



So by 2010 hope to increase bilaeral trade to $34B (existing)+$12B(increase) =$46B

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Re: India and ASEAN

Postby Paul » 29 Aug 2008 04:19

These articles are high on generalities and low on specifics. I recall news articles from 2005 stating MMS unhappiness with the earlier FTA and wanted to take a hard look at it. Have those issues been resolved? The Malay minster nearly fell out of her chair laughing when she saw toilet commodes in the restricted list when discussing with Kamal nath.

Thailand wants to piggyback on these FTAs and use it’s automotive factories to export automobiles to India. What of the FMCG sector, from my visit to India last year, most shampoos were made in SEAsia too.

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Re: India and ASEAN

Postby vsudhir » 29 Aug 2008 05:52

Is there a 'supreme national interest' clause in these FTA type multilateral commitments too?

So far, we've been operating on the basis of 'subprime national interest' onlee, seems like.

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Re: India and ASEAN

Postby G Subramaniam » 02 Sep 2008 09:13

Robert Kaplan article in Atlantic, on how Xtian missionaries are destablising Myanmar

http://www.theatlantic.com/doc/200809/burma

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Re: India and ASEAN

Postby Philip » 02 Sep 2008 18:14

The Thai standoff where a Thaksin loyalist PM is being sunk by hard right royalist/military forces,is because the current PM is following Thaksin's populist economic policies.These have greatly assisted rural Thais at the expense of vested interests."Thaksinomics" is the current flavour of many ASEAN nations,whcih goes aaginst the iinterests of big business.Hence his ousting and the ongoing power struggle in Bangkok.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2008/sep/02/thailand1
State of emergency declared in Thailand after protest turns violentIan MacKinnon in Bangkok guardian.co.uk, Tuesday September 02 2008

Thai army troops deployed as pro and anti-government demonstrators clash in Bangkok Thailand declared a state of emergency early today after one person was killed in political clashes between protesters demanding the resignation of the prime minister, Samak Sundaravej, and his supporters.

Samak empowered the army to restore order on the streets of Bangkok following the fighting, the worst violence seen since the anti-government campaign began in May.

The dramatic turn came after 400 troops in riot gear were deployed to separate the mobs brandishing clubs and sticks as they fought a brief pitched battle on the broad avenue that runs outside the regional headquarters of the United Nations.

A number of shots were fired by several of the protesters armed with pistols in an escalation in the scale of the violence.

In the swirling turmoil of Thai politics, the prime minister was also faced with the prospect of his eight-month old coalition being dissolved after the Election Commission recommended today that the supreme court disband his ruling People Power party for electoral fraud. However, the decision will take months to play out.

Earlier Samak declared the emergency rule in morning broadcasts branding it the "softest means possible", though he gave no timescale except to say that it would be over relatively quickly.

In the televised news conference Samak said that he had hoped to avoid emergency rule, but the rising violence that left one dead and 34 injured - two from gunshot wounds - had forced his hand.

"No one has the right to do such a thing as they have done," he said. "I had no other choice but to declare a state of emergency in Bangkok in order to solve the problem once and or all."

Samak gave the army's commander in chief, Anupong Paojinda, sole responsibility for enforcing the emergency rule in the capital, saying troops would assist the police in maintaining calm.

The order gives the army chief the powers to detain and remove people from any location, deploy soldiers on the streets, censor media reports that could "undermine public security", and bans gatherings of more than five people.

Tensions in Bangkok remained high as soldiers patrolled the streets around the UN headquarters where the avenue was strewn with rocks and debris from the night's trouble.

But it was unclear how the ruling would play out as hundreds of anti-government demonstrators from the People's Alliance for Democracy (PAD) vowed to continue their occupation of the grounds of Government House in Bangkok.

"We have just announced that we must continue the rally [at Government House]," said a PAD spokesman today. "We want democracy. We want the prime minister to resign from his post."

The latest violence flared after red-shirted pro-government supporters from the Democratic Alliance against Dictatorship marched through Bangkok in the early hours and clashed with the PAD near the compound.

The trouble prompted Singapore and South Korea to advise their nationals not to travel to Thailand unless their journeys were absolutely necessary, threatening to further disrupt the country's lucrative tourist industry.

Philip
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Re: India and ASEAN

Postby Philip » 09 Sep 2008 19:27

Thai PM's "cooks his own goose "!
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldne ... -show.html

The poor PM hosted a cookery show for which he was paid peanuts,which technically was illegal and in the conspiracy to get rid of the popular Thaksin,his colleague the PM and his Thaksinomics,where rural Thais were vastly benefited at the expense of the Bangkok bigbums,the court found him guilty of a constitutional vilation.The game is not over and Thailand is going to experience more instability.

Thai prime minister toppled by court for hosting cookery show
The entire Thai cabinet must stand down because prime minister Samak Sundaravej hosted a cookery programme on television, the country's constitutional court has ruled.

By Thomas Bell in Bangkok

The court found that Mr Sundaravej violated a clause of the constitution that bans ministers from being employed or having any business dealings outside government.

However, there is nothing to stop Mr Samak from becoming prime minister again, and his MPs have already said they will re-elect him on Friday.

The bizarre developments follow two weeks of protests in which anti- government activists have occupied the lawns of government house, preventing Mr Samak from reaching his office and demanding that he resign.

For a week there has been a state of emergency, and daily rumours of military coups, the resignation of the government or the dissolution of parliament.

Analysts say that both the protests and the court case reflect a deep conflict between the government's many supporters in the countryside and people in the metropolitan elite, including the army and judiciary, who hate the administration.

Mr Samak, 73, is famous for his love of food. Among his signature dishes are salmon coconut soup and pork leg marinated in coca-cola.

After taking office seven months ago Mr Samak personally cooked dinner for the Burmese prime minister, General Thein Sein, when he visited Thailand. The menu on that occasion was not revealed.

Mr Samak hosted the popular cookery show "Tasting and Complaining", which blended Thai food with his own often belligerent opinions, for seven years before becoming prime minister. He also made a few appearances on the programme after forming the government.

Giving evidence on Monday Mr Samak accepted that he was paid but argued that he was a freelance and therefore not in breach of the constitution.

"I was hired to appear on the programme and got paid from time to time," he said. "I was not an employee of the company."

Sakchai Khaewwaneesakul, the managing director of the production company, also testified that Mr Samak was not an employee. He revealed that the prime minister had received £1,317.62 for four episodes.

The court found that Mr Samak had in fact been employed and accused him of "conflicting testimony".

"As Samak's ministerial status has ended his entire cabinet must go but they have to stay as caretaker government until the new cabinet is formed," the judges unanimously ruled.

The protesters camped on the lawn at Government House call themselves the People's Alliance for Democracy, even though they refuse to recognise Mr Samak's electoral mandate and want to replace the democratic lower house of parliament with a mostly appointed chamber.

Following the verdict, Prapan Kunmee, one of the group's leaders, told the crowd occupying Government House, "We will stay here until this government is thrown out. Samak may come back."

Analysts say that amid the current political turbulence, Mr Samak's re- appointment on Friday cannot be taken for granted, although he does still seem to have the support of his party.

Some people have expressed concern that Thai politics is beginning to look silly.

"One theory is that this is a ploy to promote Thai food," joked Dr Giles Ungphakorn of Bangkok's Chulalongkorn University.

"It's ridiculous," he said. "Basically it's a ploy by anti-government groups to use any crack in the law to weaken the government."

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Re: India and ASEAN

Postby Vipul » 11 Nov 2008 21:20

India, ASEAN to sign free trade agreement on 17 December.

India will sign a free trade agreement with the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) on 17 December to better integrate with Southeast Asian economies , union minister of state for commerce Jairam Ramesh said in Bangalore on Monday.

He said prime minister Manmohan Singh would sign the pact in Bangkok.

As of now India runs a substantial trade deficit with ASEAN. Indian imports from that region was of the order of $24 billion during 200708 while its exports to the ten-nation group were to the tune of $16 billion in the same period.

''In spite of the trade deficit, we are going ahead with signing FTA in goods as a signal that India is integrating with rest of Asia which is the most economically prosperous part of the world," the minister said.

"Once the FTA in goods is signed, negotiations will begin on signing a similar agreement in services in which India has a comparative advantage, and we will also have FTA in investment," he added.

Once the FTA came into force, import duty on tea and coffee would come down from 100 per cent to 50 per cent, that of pepper from 70 per cent to 50 per cent by the year 2018, he said.

The minister said he had submitted an action plan to the prime minister to strengthen Indian tea, coffee and pepper industry over a ten-year period in order to meet the ASEAN challenge.

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Re: India and ASEAN

Postby Ameet » 23 Nov 2008 04:06

Another well thought out fatwa from the guardians of the religion of peace

Top Islamic body: Yoga is not for Muslims

http://www.cnn.com/2008/WORLD/asiapcf/1 ... index.html

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (AP) -- Malaysia's top Islamic body on Saturday ruled against Muslims practicing yoga, saying it had elements of other religions that could corrupt Muslims.

The National Fatwa Council's non-binding edict said yoga involves not just physical exercise but also includes Hindu spiritual elements, chanting and worship.

"It is inappropriate. It can destroy the faith of a Muslim," Council chairman Abdul Shukor Husin told reporters.

He noted that clerics in Egypt issued a similar edict in 2004 that called the practice of yoga "an aberration."

Though the council's decisions are not legally binding on Malaysia's Muslim population, many abide by the edicts out of deference, and the council does have the authority to ostracize an offending Muslim from society.

The Malaysia fatwa reflects the growing strain of conservatism in Malaysia, which has always taken pride in its multi-ethnic population. About 25 percent of Malaysians are ethnic Chinese and 8 percent ethnic Indians, mostly Hindus.

Recently, the council issued an edict banning tomboys, ruling that girls who act like boys violate the tenets of Islam.

The Fatwa Council took up the yoga issue after an Islamic scholar last month expressed an opinion at a seminar that it was un-Islamic.

But yoga teacher Suleiha Merican, who has been practicing yoga for 40 years, called yoga "a great health science" and said there is no religion involved.

"We don't do chanting and meditation. There is no conflict because yoga is not religion based," Merican, 56, told The Associated Press.

There are no figures for how many Muslims practice yoga, but many yoga classes have a sprinkling of Muslims attending.

Putri Rahim, a housewife, said she was no less a Muslim after practicing yoga for 10 years.

"I am mad! Maybe they have it in mind that Islam is under threat. To come out with a fatwa is an insult to intelligent Muslims. It's an insult to my belief," Putri said.

In a recent blog posting, social activist Marina Mahathir criticized the council for even considering a yoga ban, calling it "a classic case of reacting out of fear and ignorance."

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Re: India and ASEAN

Postby Neshant » 23 Nov 2008 04:23

Is there a 'supreme national interest' clause in these FTA type multilateral commitments too?
So far, we've been operating on the basis of 'subprime national interest' onlee, seems like.


once signed, there's no easy way of backing out.

although it will surely have some negative repercussions on India, there is no other choice but to challenge china's attempt to absorb the SE Asia region trade wise.

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Re: India and ASEAN

Postby RajeshA » 23 Nov 2008 14:14

What was wrong in signing a Comprehensive Economic Agreement with trade in goods, services and investments at the same time, especially as we are stronger in services.

With FTA we are giving ASEAN countries an advantage over India, but without services in this agreement, with duly negotiated give and take, we could lose out, as the agreement on services may not have similarly good conditions for India, if ever an agreement on services becomes reality.

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Re: India and ASEAN

Postby putnanja » 24 Dec 2008 04:43

Outrage over sentencing of seamen in South Korea gathers storm

Outrage over sentencing of seamen in South Korea gathers storm

Rahi Gaikwad

— Photo: Paul Noronha

SEEKING JUSTICE: Shipping organisations stage a protest in Mumbai on Tuesday against the jail sentence awarded by a South Korean court to two Indian officers of a crude carrier for alleged culpability in an oil spill.

Mumbai: The shipping fraternity in India has stepped up its campaign over the sentencing of two Indian seamen in South Korea in connection with an oil spill in Korean waters. Angry protesters gathered at the Azad Maidan here on Tuesday and pledged to boycott Korean products, especially from Samsung, headquartered in Seoul, South Korea.

Captain Jasprit Chawla and Chief Officer Syam Chetan of Hebei Spirit, a very large crude carrier managed by V. Ships, were on December 10, 2008, sentenced to jail for 18 months and eight months respectively by the Daejeon district court in South Korea. In addition, Mr. Chawla was fined thousands of U.S. dollars.

This judgment reversed the earlier order of a lower court, which exonerated the two officers. The spilling accident took place on December 7, 2007, near the Port of Daesan on the Yellow Sea coast off Taean County.

According to the press note by the Indian Seafarers Federation (ISF) and media reports, Hebei Spirit, carrying 2,60,000 tonnes of crude oil, was anchored when a free-floating barge owned by Samsung collided with the ship and punctured it. Some “10,800 tonnes of oil” was leaked along the coast, causing massive pollution and affecting the livelihoods of fishing communities.

Shipping and maritime organisations across the board contend that the two officers were not to be blamed for the spillage. On the contrary, their efforts saved lives and prevented the tanker from exploding. The ISF has termed the judgment an “example of criminalisation of seafarers for discharging their duties.”

Decrying the judgment, Abdulgani Y. Serang, general secretary of National Union of Seafarers (NUSI), said the inquiry report of the Korean maritime authorities was an “attempt to implicate the seafarers.” At a press conference here on Tuesday, he also cited instances of alleged manipulation by Samsung.
Forlorn families

The families of Mr. Chawla and Mr. Chetan are also fighting a tough battle against a powerful nation and corporation. The judgment comes as a crushing blow to them as they were all set to celebrate the earlier acquittal.

“I am the saddest and most distressed father of Syam Chetan,” said his father Commodore (retd.) D.R. Syam, Indian Navy. He said his family had not seen their son for the past 14 months. “I was in touch with my son ever since he was first detained. He used to tell me justice will prevail. When he was acquitted, he even told us the flight details for his return journey. However, the new judgment is highly biased; it is a miscarriage of justice. Since December 10, I have not been able to speak to my son,” he said.

Gurpreet, Mr. Chawla’s wife, is a picture of despair. With two children back home in Dehradun, this fight for justice is a protracted ordeal for her. “In between, I had gone to meet him in Korea. We were very hopeful. Shipping experts all over the world have condemned this decision. My husband cannot even get bail. The court was biased against us. We were not given enough time to present our case. The witnesses were only from the Korean side. One Korean witness told us that he would speak in our favour. The next we heard was he had lost his job. We ignored all these limitations as we were sure of our innocence,” she said.

Commodore (retd.) D.R. Syam said though the seamen were given the best legal aid, all the proceedings were in Korean and one did not know what was being said. He said the families had received support from the Indian government. “At the diplomatic level, the External Affairs Ministry has summoned the South Korean ambassador thrice. This is the utmost it can do. However, it has been to no avail. We would therefore request the government to step up their act.”


Hope the GoI takes more interest into the case. I wish the media highlighted these strong arm tactics of samsung and spread awareness.

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Re: India and ASEAN

Postby Yogi_G » 24 Dec 2008 09:42

RaviBg wrote:Outrage over sentencing of seamen in South Korea gathers storm

Outrage over sentencing of seamen in South Korea gathers storm

Rahi Gaikwad

— Photo: Paul Noronha

SEEKING JUSTICE: Shipping organisations stage a protest in Mumbai on Tuesday against the jail sentence awarded by a South Korean court to two Indian officers of a crude carrier for alleged culpability in an oil spill.

Mumbai: The shipping fraternity in India has stepped up its campaign over the sentencing of two Indian seamen in South Korea in connection with an oil spill in Korean waters. Angry protesters gathered at the Azad Maidan here on Tuesday and pledged to boycott Korean products, especially from Samsung, headquartered in Seoul, South Korea.

Captain Jasprit Chawla and Chief Officer Syam Chetan of Hebei Spirit, a very large crude carrier managed by V. Ships, were on December 10, 2008, sentenced to jail for 18 months and eight months respectively by the Daejeon district court in South Korea. In addition, Mr. Chawla was fined thousands of U.S. dollars.

This judgment reversed the earlier order of a lower court, which exonerated the two officers. The spilling accident took place on December 7, 2007, near the Port of Daesan on the Yellow Sea coast off Taean County.

According to the press note by the Indian Seafarers Federation (ISF) and media reports, Hebei Spirit, carrying 2,60,000 tonnes of crude oil, was anchored when a free-floating barge owned by Samsung collided with the ship and punctured it. Some “10,800 tonnes of oil” was leaked along the coast, causing massive pollution and affecting the livelihoods of fishing communities.

Shipping and maritime organisations across the board contend that the two officers were not to be blamed for the spillage. On the contrary, their efforts saved lives and prevented the tanker from exploding. The ISF has termed the judgment an “example of criminalisation of seafarers for discharging their duties.”

Decrying the judgment, Abdulgani Y. Serang, general secretary of National Union of Seafarers (NUSI), said the inquiry report of the Korean maritime authorities was an “attempt to implicate the seafarers.” At a press conference here on Tuesday, he also cited instances of alleged manipulation by Samsung.
Forlorn families

The families of Mr. Chawla and Mr. Chetan are also fighting a tough battle against a powerful nation and corporation. The judgment comes as a crushing blow to them as they were all set to celebrate the earlier acquittal.

“I am the saddest and most distressed father of Syam Chetan,” said his father Commodore (retd.) D.R. Syam, Indian Navy. He said his family had not seen their son for the past 14 months. “I was in touch with my son ever since he was first detained. He used to tell me justice will prevail. When he was acquitted, he even told us the flight details for his return journey. However, the new judgment is highly biased; it is a miscarriage of justice. Since December 10, I have not been able to speak to my son,” he said.

Gurpreet, Mr. Chawla’s wife, is a picture of despair. With two children back home in Dehradun, this fight for justice is a protracted ordeal for her. “In between, I had gone to meet him in Korea. We were very hopeful. Shipping experts all over the world have condemned this decision. My husband cannot even get bail. The court was biased against us. We were not given enough time to present our case. The witnesses were only from the Korean side. One Korean witness told us that he would speak in our favour. The next we heard was he had lost his job. We ignored all these limitations as we were sure of our innocence,” she said.

Commodore (retd.) D.R. Syam said though the seamen were given the best legal aid, all the proceedings were in Korean and one did not know what was being said. He said the families had received support from the Indian government. “At the diplomatic level, the External Affairs Ministry has summoned the South Korean ambassador thrice. This is the utmost it can do. However, it has been to no avail. We would therefore request the government to step up their act.”


Hope the GoI takes more interest into the case. I wish the media highlighted these strong arm tactics of samsung and spread awareness.


I think we had a recent agreement with Cambodia where we would swap prisoners serving time in the other country, bring them back and make them serve the reminder of the time in their own homeland's prisons. I think we should do this in this case and then go light on these folks...release them in some time and then show the finger to the South Koreans...

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Re: India and ASEAN

Postby svinayak » 16 Jan 2009 04:00

http://www.bdafrica.com/index.php?optio ... temid=5821

http://www.khaleejtimes.com/DisplayArti ... ekend&col=
Indian diaspora — the success story
PARAG KHANNA (COVER STORY)

16 January 2009
The virtual Indian universe is described as Bollystan — an import-export marketplace of literary genius, spiritual essence, cinematographic border-crossing and, increasingly, political savvy.

Together they are doing for India what nuclear weapons have not: making it a great power.

T he new face of global success is increasingly Indian. The ubiquitous Dr Sanjay Gupta is unmistakably of the Indian subcontinent. Bobby Jindal, the whiz-kid Indian-American governor of Louisiana could find himself playing a more prominent role in years to come.

Today, the three million Indian-Americans have a higher median income than most other migrant communities. Indians are force multipliers, inflating their national image and strategic footprint worldwide. Knowledge, money, networks and trust — flung ever faster by globalisation — have meant that even India, the country with the largest number of destitute people in the world, is considered a global economic powerhouse, even if it isn’t one yet.

Almost every ethnic or national diaspora in the world has some presence in America, but few achieve the scale of social, economic, political and cultural influence that Indians have achieved. Chinese have climbed to great success since their post-World War II waves arrived on US shores, and their next generation packs the Ivy League today. But they are less visible in the upper echelons of American power. As they do in dozens of other countries, particularly around the Pacific Rim, Chinese peoples cluster and stick to themselves, forming protective Chinatowns.

By contrast, Indians are assimilators, maintaining traditional values, but adapting to any national context. The British Empire planted Indian migrants around the planet, particularly in the West Indies and Africa.

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Re: India and ASEAN

Postby putnanja » 27 Jan 2009 02:43


Arun_S
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Re: India and ASEAN

Postby Arun_S » 07 Feb 2009 11:18

Two piece ful religions at logger head:

A Pope’s fallibility

Published: February 5 2009

Pope Benedict XVI has done it again. In September 2006, in the course of an arcane speech about the de-Hellenisation of Christianity, he managed to enrage Muslims by throwing in a quote from a Byzantine emperor on Islam being violent, evil and inhuman. We all missed the point, the Vatican said. His Holiness was talking about the relationship between faith and reason.

Last month, Pope Benedict received back into the Catholic Church four clerics excommunicated in 1988, including an English-born bishop, Richard Williamson, who had just told Swedish television “not a single Jew died in a gas chamber”. Despite widespread outrage, apparently we all missed the point again. The Pope was trying to heal a schism in the Church, the Vatican said, and Benedict was not even aware of the bishop’s views.

As the furore grew, the Vatican ordered the renegade bishop to recant. But this simply won’t wash.

Mr Williamson and his colleagues belong to the Society of Saint Pius X and were ordained bishops – illicitly under canon law – by its founder, Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre, who led a rebellion against the opening up of the Church started by the Second Vatican Council of 1962-65. That is why they were chucked out, despite the best efforts of the Pope – then Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger – to keep them in. Mr Williamson has long been openly anti-Semitic, from a fundamentalist group that has flirted with fascism in its defence of causes from Vichy France to Francoist Spain.

For this German Pope to devote years to bringing these errant brethren back into the fold and not know one of their number is a Holocaust denier is solipsism of cosmic proportions. Yet this learned Pope is not just a scholar but a student of power and the guardian of a dogmatic doctrinal certitude. ... .. . . . . .

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Re: India and ASEAN

Postby Atri » 21 Feb 2009 01:19


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Re: India and ASEAN

Postby shyam » 14 Apr 2009 01:23

Does anybody know what exactly is happening in Thailand?

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Re: India and ASEAN

Postby Arun_S » 25 May 2009 22:26

Indonesia May Have Role in India's Regional Plan
By vivek raghuvanshi
15 May 2009
NEW DELHI - The Defence Ministry may redraw India's defense strategy in the southeast, giving extra importance to relations with Indonesia. Some active-duty and retired Indian military officials have suggested more diplomacy with Jakarta and joint exercises with Indonesian troops, ministry sources here said.

Efforts also should be made to check the growing Chinese military buildup in the Indian Ocean region, a senior Defence Ministry official said, noting that China already has a base in the Coco Islands, leased from Myanmar, from which it monitors India's ballistic missile testing range. Indian defense planners have been told that India's Sunda-Banka, Lombok-Makassar and Ombai-Wetar straits are becoming strategic sea passages much like the Strait of Malacca, Defence Ministry sources said.

A senior ministry official said India and Indonesia have been strengthening their defense ties for some time, and the two countries have even explored the possibility of joint production of weapons and military equipment.

The two countries have also discussed joint patrols by Indian and Indonesian warships in the Strait of Malacca, the region's favored sea route for large ships, including oil tankers from the Arabian Gulf.

An Indonesian diplomat said that Jakarta is interested in buying the BrahMos supersonic anti-ship missile, jointly developed by India and Russia. Indonesia also is interested in the co-production with India of radars, electronic equipment and artillery weapons, the diplomat said.

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Re: India and ASEAN

Postby Ameet » 05 Jun 2009 23:29

India and ASEAN to sign FTA in August. Comes into effect 1/1/2010.

http://www.livemint.com/2009/06/0423000 ... to-be.html

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Interesting Article on Cam Ranh Bay

Postby Skratu » 30 Jun 2009 03:27

Vietnam’s trump card in the South China Sea disputes?
By Quynh Le – BBCVietnamese.com

As tension in the South China Sea rises, there is rumour that the US is seeking lease of
Vietnam's Cam Ranh Bay.
Hong Kong-based Wen Wei Po newspaper recently claimed the US is seeking to lease
the military base in Cam Ranh, completing its attempt to "encircle" China.
However, Western observers doubt Vietnam would once again allow foreign armies'
presence on its soil.

'Encircling China'


Such rumours have surfaced occasionally since the day the Russian flag was lowered the
last time in Cam Ranh in 2002.
Given recent Sino-US confrontations in the South China Sea, it's no surprise there are
concerns that China's interests can be affected if the US decides to involve deeper in the
disputes.
The Wen Wei Po argues, "The US already has two strategic island chains in the Pacific,
not including Cam Ranh Bay. Once the US successfully leases it, the chain of islands will
be enhanced."

However, David Brewster, from Australian National University's Strategic and Defence
Studies Centre, said it was "extremely unlikely" that either Vietnam or the US would
want such a deal.
"It is very unlikely Vietnam would play its major strategic trump card in this manner in
the current security environment."

"Such a move would have major repercussions for both Vietnam and the United States
and it is difficult to see why either would make that move,"
he told the BBC.

Iskander Rehman, a PhD student at the CERI (Centre d'Etudes et de Recherches
Internationales) in Paris, concurred that there are major obstacles to the realization of a
permanent US military presence in Cam Ranh.
"Many in Vietnam’s defence establishment fear any prolonged American presence could
be viewed by the Chinese as a ‘casus belli and jeopardise the entire painstaking process of
Sino-Vietnamese normalisation,
" he said.
According to Prof. Carlyle Thayer, a professor at the Australian Defence Force Academy,
the Americans are interested in "places rather than bases", given the public backlash they
saw in countries like South Korea.
Although Cam Ranh Bay is deemed by many to be the finest natural deep sea port in
Southeast Asia, Thayer, a veteran Vietnam watcher, said the military facilities there had
been left to run down from the Soviet time.
"It would take millions of dollars to bring the facilities up to international standards,"
he
said.

Navy power


The latest briefing paper by the Washington D.C.-based Jamestown Foundation noted a
recommendation by General Zhang Li, former deputy chief of the General Staff of the
People's Liberation Army (PLA), to build an airport and seaport in the Spratly Islands.
General Zhang Li claimed that China only has eight operational naval vessels deployable
to the region, which means its response capacity in the South China Sea is limited.
Russell Hsiao, the analyst at the Foundation, saw this as a likely signal that China is
increasingly willing to use force in resolving territorial disputes.
A recent report that Vietnam had signed a $1.8 billion deal with Russia for six Kilo-class
submarines was seen by many in China as a tough message to Beijing.
Of course, Vietnam alone is no match for China, and as a Hong Kong paper said,
"Vietnam's main strategy is to internationalize the South China Sea issue, attracting
Western powers to counter China".


Vietnam's trump card?


To a certain extent, Cam Ranh seems to be an asset Vietnam can promise to interested
external powers.
Dr. David Scott, a professor at Brunel University who has written a trilogy on China,
noted Cam Ranh's role was a striking one.
"Vietnam has been careful not to antagonise China too far, but remains ready to dangle
Cam Ranh Bay access as a military and also commercial carrot, amidst rising friction in
the South China Sea,"
he said.
India, China's likely rival in the region, has shown some interest in Cam Ranh Bay.
In its so-called String of Pearls strategy, China has constructed lots of ports in Asia,
including many countries which don't have easy relationships with India.
Beijing financed a port complex for Pakistan in Gwadar, resulting in India's concern that
there was a concerted attempt to neutralize its influence in South Asia.
China also reportedly helped Burma construct several naval facilities on the Bay of
Bengal, which may be upgraded for military purposes.
Last year, for the first time a Chinese warship visited Cambodia and some believe that
Beijing managed to secure access to Cambodia's ports.
Therefore some hawkish analysts in India are advocating closer ties with Vietnam and a
bigger presence in South East Asia.

But Walter Ladwig, a doctoral student at Oxford University, argued the capabilities of
India's navy, though steadily expanding, have not caught up with their ambition.
"It would be hard to envision, in the near-term, that Indian ships could be based in
Vietnam. The Indian Navy could not secure the sea-lines of communication (SLOC) so
far from home and so close to China,"
he noted.
David Brewster said some sections of India's security establishment would like to see
their country having a maritime security role in the South China Sea, largely in response
to the growth of China's capabilities in the Indian Ocean.
But he said "this seems quite unrealistic in light of India's limited naval capabilities and
India's lack of real interests in the South China Sea".

In a more realistic scenario, according to Prof. Carlyle Thayer, Vietnam will be
transformed into "a transit point" for foreign warships.

Many warships - from the US, Russia, India and China - have made port calls in
Vietnam. This indicates there is money to be made for Vietnam if the country can make
better use of its strategic location and infrastructure.
From Vietnam's point of view, the best option seems to open Cam Ranh Bay to private
commerce, while granting military access to other countries on a case-by-case basis,
similar to what happened to the Philippines's Subic Bay.
Iskander Rehman said, "Vietnam can maintain a greater degree of strategic flexibility, if it
can continue to balance the US, India and China by granting berthing rights on a
temporary and conveniently non-committal basis".


Original link (but in Vietnamese):
http://www.bbc.co.uk/vietnamese/vietnam ... ysis.shtml

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Re: India and ASEAN

Postby sunilUpa » 17 Jul 2009 06:50

Breaking news..two bomb blasts hit Jakarta hotels..Ritz and Marriot.

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Re: India and ASEAN

Postby Nirantar » 17 Jul 2009 10:25

No, the religion of piss has nothing to do with this. Its all Us-Jews-Hindu conspiracy to malign Islam. They first get their installations attacked / bombed and then they blame Islam.

The piss be upon the believers.
Last edited by RayC on 17 Jul 2009 11:26, edited 2 times in total.
Reason: Spelling error? ;)

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Re: India and ASEAN

Postby IndraD » 24 Jul 2009 00:08

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/asia-pacific/8154497.stm
Tourists warned of Thailand airport scam

some responses:

Same happened to me in April this year. The police arrested me and charged me approx £400. There were 5 of us in our group, we purchased 1000 cigarettes at Heathrow, but on leaving the plane at Bangkok the police approached me and told me to keep them in one bag. I did as I was told, and that was the set up, so when I got through customs with the other four people they arrested me and would not accept what we told them. They took copies of my passport and made me sign at least six documents, all in Thai. They would not give me copies so at this moment I don't know what I signed. They escorted me to an ATM. I have been in touch with the British consulate who asked me if I want to make a complaint but I don't want to go to another country and find they have done something to my passport. I will never return to Thailand again, it was the scariest time of my life.


Another scam at Bangkok Airport is when the Thai customs meet passengers off airplanes from Dubai/Qatar where there is cheap duty free. The customs tell passengers to put duty free items inside their check-in luggage when they take it off the carousel - or they will be prosecuted for smuggling. They then tell people that it will be OK not to show or declare any duty free items. When the passengers reach the arrivals area, the customs pounce and you are arrested and taken to customs head office at BANG NA and told to pay four times the duty or go straight to jail. There is an ATM machine next door to the customs office. Your goods are kept by the officers and they then pocket the money you have paid them and you are free to go without any criminal record.

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Re: India and ASEAN

Postby RajeshA » 13 Aug 2009 14:03

India set to gain access to trillion-dollar ASEAN market, deal today: PTI

Bangkok, August 13, 2009 - India and 10-nation economic bloc ASEAN will ink a free trade pact in Bangkok today, which will open the 1.7 billion consumer market to each other.

After six years of painstaking talks, the Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement (CECA) will be signed which will eliminate duties on 80 per cent of goods traded between the two over the next eight years.

Commerce Minister Anand Sharma, who is here to sign the pact, said the agreement is well balanced and is in harmony
with the India's Look East Policy.

"I can say negotiations have been painstaking. The negotiators have ensured that our sensitive areas where we had
concerns are fully addressed," Sharma said.

When asked whether the concerns of plantation growers of South India have been addressed, Sharma said the whole debate of the CECA adversely impacting domestic planters was based on "uninformed" speculations.

FICCI Secretary General Amit Mitra, who is accompanying Sharma, said, "This agreement will be a win-win situation for India and the the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN). It takes care of the country's strategic interest in line with the Look East Policy."


Interesting, that now that Kamal Nath has been shifted away from the Commerce Ministry, all these pacts are so quickly falling into place, and earlier stances are being simply called "uninformed" speculations.

Would be interesting to know how all the sticking points were in the end resolved! Some criticism on possible giveaways could bring the GoI under more scrutiny when the WTO talks take place.

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Re: India and ASEAN

Postby RajeshA » 13 Aug 2009 16:21

India, ASEAN sign deal on free trade in goods by Vithoon Amorn: Reuters

BANGKOK, Aug 13 (Reuters) - India and the 10-country Southeast Asian bloc ASEAN signed a free trade agreement on Thursday after more than six years of negotiations, but the deal did not embrace software and information technology.

Thai and Indian officials said the Free Trade Agreement (FTA) would eliminate tariffs on products including electronics, chemicals, machinery and textiles, that account for more than 80 percent of total trade in goods between the two sides.

The agreement will be effective from Jan. 1, 2010, and tariffs on the products covered would be reduced to zero between 2013 and 2016, according to a joint statement.

After strong lobbying by India's farm sector, led by southern Kerala and Karnataka states, the terms of the FTA let India protect its agricultural sector by excluding 489 products, mostly commodities including rubber, from tariff cuts.

Tariffs on a much smaller list of products described as "highly sensitive", including palm oil and coffee, would be reduced over about 10 years, but only modestly.

Kerala state had objected to slashing duties on fish, rubber, palm oil, pepper, tea and coffee.

Indonesia and Malaysia had actively sought Indian tariff cuts on palm oil products, but India insisted on protecting its products from cheaper ASEAN imports, mainly from those countries.

IT should have been part of the deal.


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