PHUKETWAN recognises the importance of Asean with the Economic Community approaching and marks what's happening around the region with a new column, Asean Today.
AP Thailand's ousted prime minister Yingluck Shinawatra, who was pushed from office more than a year ago, impeached and faces criminal charges, hit back at her opponents with her own lawsuit. Yingluck filed a case at Bangkok's Criminal Court to counter-sue the attorney-general over the handling of her prosecution in connection with a subsidy scheme for rice farmers, which ran up huge losses.
thejakartapost.com Singapore had to shut its schools last Friday and began distributing free antipollution masks to the elderly and other vulnerable people as a thick smoky haze shrouded the island nation, with pollution levels at their worst this year. The haze has caused tensions between Singapore and Indonesia, particularly after Vice President Jusuf Kalla commented recently that neighboring countries ''already enjoy 11 months of clean fresh air from Indonesia,'' and suggested that it was no big deal if they suffered from the haze for the one month when forests were usually burned.
nst.com.my Singapore has had enough. Should not we be feeling just as weary? Malaysians have had to put up with well over a month of bad air, which has gotten worse despite the promises of solutions afoot. For if it is not possible to bring the haze to a quick end, then it is not unlike accepting it as a fact of life, a seasonal hazard that, despite being man-made, must be perceived as a given. And, the cavalier attitude of Indonesian Vice-President Jusuf Kalla saying Indonesia need not apologise for the fires burning within its borders is an affront to its neighbors and sister Asean nations.
straitstimes.com Singapore respects Indonesia's sovereignty with regard to airspace control, training areas over the South China Sea and even the current haze crisis, which Singapore has offered to help resolve. That was the key message Defence Minister Ng Eng Hen has conveyed to his Indonesian counterpart Ryamizard Ryacudu and Indonesia's Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal and Security Affairs Luhut Panjaitan, at high-level talks in Jakarta.
thediplomat.com David Chandler, an American historian and a fellow of the Australian Academy of the Humanities, notes [about the $55 million deal to take unwanted refugees] that ''it seems [. . . ] that Cambodia has pulled the wool over the Australians' eyes by letting Australians think that a genuinely beneficial arrangement had been made. The Australians were I suspect hasty, trusting, and naive. [. . . ] I am sure [the text] had escape clauses which the Cambodians have now used.'' Phil Robertson, the deputy director of the Asia division for the US-based NGO Human Rights Watch, added that ''Australia is now getting what it paid for, Cambodia-style - which is to say, not much of anything.''
asiaone.com The Attorney General's Chambers (AGC) announced the introduction of new corruption laws to address abuse of power and misconduct in public office. The new laws will allow legal action to be taken against civil servants who fail to carry out their duties to a ''high ethical standard,'' said the AGC in a statement.
channelnewsasia.com The EU said it will for the first time deploy observers in Myanmar's upcoming elections when the opposition led by Aung San Suu Kyi is expected to make significant gains against the military-dominated government.
wsj.com Vietnam's economic growth accelerated in the third quarter, led by strong manufacturing, especially in the foreign-invested sector.
bloomberg Gross domestic product rose 6.81 percent in the third quarter from a year earlier, according to figures released by the Hanoi-based General Statistics Office Tuesday that complements other signs of an economic pickup. That compares with a revised 6.47 percent pace in the second quarter this year.
philstar.com The Philippines continues to claw its way up the world competitiveness rankings as it climbed five notches in the World Economic Forum (WEF)'s Global Competitiveness Index 2015-2016. The country ranked 47th among 140 economies this year, an improvement from its 52nd spot. The ranking last year was seven notches higher than the previous year's spot.
xinhua In an interview with Xinhua's Vientiane Bureau before a trip for New York, Tammy Medard, who now heads the first foreign-owned commercial bank based in Vientiane, said that they now have a ''gender balance.'' ''At ANZ Laos we have 65 percent female membership of our executive team and we have roughly the same ratio throughout our entire business here,'' Medard said.