Global Development Through China’s New ‘Silk Routes’

SilkRouteSummit

Analysis by Kalinga Seneviratne

BANGKOK (IDN) – When China hosted a two-day conference in May to help revive the ancient trade routes from Asia to Europe and Africa it was greeted with scepticism by most of the western media. But in much of Asia the mood was more of optimism and opportunity. Continue reading “Global Development Through China’s New ‘Silk Routes’”

Asia needs ‘thinking’ media to avoid ‘Arab Spring’ chaos

April 25, 2017

By Kalinga Seneviratne

Special to The Nation (Thailand)

In December last year two UN agencies – UNDP and Unesco – organised a gathering in Bangkok called “Case 4 Space” where young activist communicators from Asia were brought together and largely addressed by westerners on how to demand space for their voices to be heard.

The event was coordinated by an activist group from the UK called “Restless Development” that was promoting a “restless” type of activism for “democratic” development – the same recipe of the “Arab Spring” uprising that has created chaos and mayhem in the Arab world. 

Attending the event as an observer, I was alarmed by the fact that these two UN agencies were able to organise this event in Asia without being scrutinised by Asian media or the governments in the region. Continue reading “Asia needs ‘thinking’ media to avoid ‘Arab Spring’ chaos”

Bringing Science, Ethics & Buddhism Together To Save Humanity

By Kalinga Seneviratne

This article is the 11th in a series of joint productions of Lotus News Features and IDN-InDepthNews, flagship of the International Press Syndicate.

RAJGIR, India (IDN) – Participants at a conference convened in this historic capital of the Magadha kingdom of the Buddha’s time by the Nava Nalanda Mahavihare (NNM) shared the view that, for humanity to survive, science, ethics and Buddhism’s mind-centric approach to understanding nature and society could help. Continue reading “Bringing Science, Ethics & Buddhism Together To Save Humanity”

India’s Yogi Chief Minister May Rewrite Democracy Textbooks

Analysis by Kalinga Seneviratne

NEW DELHI (IDN) – From across Asia to Europe and the United States voters have shown their dismay at corrupt political systems by voting in unconventional politicians who promise to “clean the swamp”.

So the election mid-March of a Yogi Chief Minister in Uttar Pradesh – India’s most populous state – may well herald in a new era for Asian politics, where religion could step in to clean up the corruption in politics. Continue reading “India’s Yogi Chief Minister May Rewrite Democracy Textbooks”

Suu Kyi’s Astute Move On Rohingya Issue in Myanmar

Lotus News Analysis by Kalinga Seneviratne

BANGKOK (IDN) – With mounting demonstrations in support of Rohingyas in fellow ASEAN (Association of South East Asian Nations) Muslim majority countries Malaysia and Indonesia, Myanmar’s de-facto leader and Foreign Minister Aung San Suu Kyi made an astute move to summon Foreign Ministers of ASEAN for a one-day “retreat” to Yangoon on December 19 to brief them on the situation in Myanmar’s Rakhine State where most Rohingyas live.

A first of its kind for ASEAN where a member country has summoned ministers to discuss an internal affairs, yet, it demonstrated that Suu Kyi is no hostage to western human rights groups who supported her long campaign to bring “democracy” to Myanmar. Continue reading “Suu Kyi’s Astute Move On Rohingya Issue in Myanmar”

SDGs in Asia Risk Hijacking by Western Activists

By Kalinga Seneviratne

BANGKOK (IDN) – Early December three UN agencies UNDPUNESCO and UNFPA organized a three-day youth mobilizing program at the UNESCAP building here called ‘Case for Space’ (C4S) touted as a campaign led by over 60 partners in the region to raise awareness and advocate for the promotion ofSustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in the Asia-Pacific region.

Yet, it was dominated by mainly European and American speakers and consultants, with the project being led by a UK-based activist group Restless Development, which made many participants from the region to wonder whether the SDG agenda is being hijacked by westerner activists. Continue reading “SDGs in Asia Risk Hijacking by Western Activists”

Philippines and Malaysia Unplug Obama’s Asian Pivot

By Kalinga Seneviratnexi-d

BANGKOK (IDN) – Philippines’ outspoken President Rodrigo Duterte while unplugging U.S. President’s much-publicized “Pivot to Asia”, has also challenged the United States to help promote cooperation in the region not confrontation.

Duterte provoked alarm in diplomatic circles last month (October) by announcing his country’s “separation” from the United States and realignment with China while on a visit to Beijing.

Malaysia’s Prime Minister Najib Razak has also signaled a similar realignment of foreign policy during a visit to Beijing. In a commentary published in the China Daily he said that former colonial powers should not be lecturing to countries they once exploited on running their internal affairs. Continue reading “Philippines and Malaysia Unplug Obama’s Asian Pivot”