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International relations

AUKUS roils ASEAN waters ahead of East Asia Summit

Washington, Canberra, Beijing to join virtual meeting Wednesday evening

AUKUS will supply Australia with nuclear submarine technology from the U.S. and U.K. -- an arrangement that does not sit well with some ASEAN governments.   © Reuters

SINGAPORE -- An undercurrent of unease over the intensifying superpower rivalry and the new AUKUS alliance is running through the Association of Southeast Asian Nations' summits this week, with some members taking the opportunity to voice their concerns.

In a highlight of three days of virtual meetings, ASEAN will host the East Asia Summit on Wednesday evening with leaders from two of the three AUKUS members -- the U.S. and Australia -- along with China, India, Japan, New Zealand, Russia and South Korea. This will be the first such summit since Washington and Canberra forged the new trilateral grouping last month with the U.K., shaking the region's security landscape and drawing the ire of multiple governments, not least the one in Beijing.

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