Flurry of activity before Asean Foreign Ministers' Meeting begins

Foreign Minister Vivian Balakrishnan (centre in picture) arrived in Bangkok yesterday to attend the Asean Foreign Ministers' Meeting and related discussions like the East Asia Summit and Asean Regional Forum. The annual Asean Foreign Ministers' Meeti
PHOTO: MINISTRY OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS

Foreign Minister Vivian Balakrishnan (centre in picture) arrived in Bangkok yesterday to attend the Asean Foreign Ministers' Meeting and related discussions like the East Asia Summit and Asean Regional Forum. The annual Asean Foreign Ministers' Meeting starts today and will be followed by a series of meetings where the Asean ministers will engage the 10-nation bloc's dialogue partners like China, the United States, Australia, Russia, Japan and India. A flurry of diplomatic activity took place on the sidelines yesterday, as visiting Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov paid a courtesy call on Thai Premier Prayut Chan-o-cha. Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi also held bilateral meetings with his counterparts from Indonesia, Cambodia and the Philippines. Issues like the South China Sea, Myanmar's Rakhine state crisis and the US-China trade war are expected to feature in discussions in the main programme or on the sidelines at this gathering.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 31, 2019, with the headline 'Flurry of activity before Asean Foreign Ministers' Meeting begins'. Print Edition | Subscribe