Can the Rohingya issue block the development of BIMSTEC?

Dr. Robin Ramcharan, Executive Director of Asia Centre, was interviewed by Sreeparna Banerjee from the Observer Research Foundation on 21 March 2022. Dr. Ramcharan discussed the current state of Rohingyas and displaced communities in Myanmar. Stating that BIMSTEC members should consider value connectivity and humanitarian aid, Dr. Ramcharan mentions that members should also aim to achieve Sustainable Development Goal pledges. To help alleviate the suffering of Rohingyas, Dr. Ramcharan suggests that BIMSTEC should support each other financially and politically. Watch the interview here.

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Journalists’ Freedoms Can Be Re-Ignited

On 22 March 2022, 2021-22 Journalism for an Equitable Asia Award prize winner Phoung Vantha from Cambodianess spoke to Dr. James Gomez, Regional Director, Asia Centre, about the Centre's latest report Media Freedoms in Southeast Asia: Repeal Restrictive Laws, Strengthen Quality Journalism. The discussion was on the situation of media freedoms in Cambodia and what a roadmap for media development should look like.Read the article here.

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China Uses Overseas Social Media to Spread Unique Views on War in Ukraine

On 22 March 2022, Dr. James Gomez, Regional Director of Asia Centre, was interviewed for an article 'China Uses Overseas Social Media to Spread Unique Views on War in Ukraine' by Ralph Jennings of VOA News. He commented on the use of advertisements by Chinese state-controlled media and recommends that the placer of the ads (who are not necessarily government agencies themselves) should be identified and traced back to the CCP.Read the article here.

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Strengthening Quality Journalism to Fight Online Disinformation

As the majority of news production and consumption shifts to social media so has government control. “Media Freedom in Southeast Asia: Repeal Restrictive Laws, Strengthen Quality Journalism,” outlines how fake news legislation is used to silence media organisations and journalists who produce and disseminate critical content online.Launched by Asia Centre and the Friedrich Naumann’s Foundation on 15 March 2022, the report recommends that governments focus on strengthening media organisations rather than silencing them. Through these efforts journalists can counterbalance online disinformation through verified information and quality journalism. Tech companies can help by not feeding hate and using algorithms to spread…

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Asia Centre and Indonesian Parliament’s Expert Agency Sign MoU

On 14 March 2022, Asia Centre and The Expertise Agency of The House of Representatives of The Republic of Indonesia signed a 5 year Memorandum of Understanding (MoU). Through the MoU, both organisations pledges to jointly undertake the publishing of research outputs, execute teaching and training programmes, develop course outlines and materials, and support each other to promote joint activities. Built off of a few years of engagement between the two organisations, the MoU formalises the path for future collaborations and joint projects. The Expertise Agency first participated in Asia Centre’s 3rd International Conference on Businesses in Human Rights in…

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China Dictates Messaging About What’s Happening in Ukraine

On 7 March 2022, Dr. James Gomez, Regional Director of Asia Centre, was interviewed for an article 'China Dictates Messaging About What's Happening in Ukraine' by VOA News. He commented on how the CCP have been controlling the narrative of the Ukrainian crisis. Read the article here.

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Continued Unemployment Furthers Inequality

The second year of the COVID-19 pandemic pushed the world into further unemployment and inequality. Reporting under the theme, ‘Inequality - Threat to Lives and Livelihoods,’ the journalists discussed how disadvantaged communities such as women, ethnic groups, religious and gender minorities, migrant and informal workers found themselves languishing in unemployment as a result of the pandemic. The journalists' articles were shared during the 2021-22 Journalism for an Equitable Asia Award. Watch the event here.  The top 10 finalists from Asia wrote about how COVID-19 impacted the lives and livelihoods of disadvantaged groups. These groups included minorities such as women, ethnic, gender…

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Asia Centre and Oxfam Announce 2021-22 Journalism Award Finalists

Asia Centre and Oxfam in Asia are pleased to announce the finalists for the 2021-22 Journalism For an Equitable Asia Award.The Award recognises the work of journalists who wrote on the threat of inequality to the lives and livelihoods of disadvantaged groups including women, ethnic, religious and gender minorities, and migrant and informal workers.The Journalism for an Equitable Asia Award aims to not only recognize these journalists, but also to encourage more journalists to write for a fairer Asia.  Here are the finalists: Miss Meg Adonis is a 25-year-old writer in the Philippines. She was a journalist for the Philippine Daily Inquirer,…

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Harrowing tale of a disappeared

On 4 February 2022, Dr. James Gomez's book review piece on "Silencing Of A Laotian Son – The Life, Work And Enforced Disappearance Of Sombath Somphone" is published in the Bangkok Post. Reviewed by a fellow Singaporean, the book by Somphone's Singaporean wife, Ng Shui Meng, is a record of her husband's kidnapping and struggles against injustice. The book proves yet again the prevalence of enforced disappearances, especially in Southeast Asia, and the unimaginable fate that victims face. It signals that actions are needed to prevent enforced disappearances, to hold the perpetrators to account, and to seek justice for the…

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A Very Long Resistance in Myanmar?

Dr. James Gomez, Regional Director of Asia Centre, was interviewed in a podcast "A Very Long Resistance in Myanmar?" by BFM Radio on 7 February 2022. It has been a year since the coup in Myanmar, and since then, public protests have persisted. Dr. Gomez discussed the political unrest in the country and give his opinion on whether the unrest will develop into a civil war. Listen to the podcast here.

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