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ASEAN's emblem, center, features stalks of rice that symbolize the 10 member countries' solidarity.    © Nikkei illustration
Asia Insight

ASEAN defends its Indo-Pacific 'centrality' between Quad and China

Myanmar and COVID crises threaten bloc's role in regional order

KENTARO IWAMOTO, Nikkei staff writer | Singapore

SINGAPORE -- As superpower encounters go these days, it was par for the course.

At the online ASEAN Defense Ministers' Meeting Plus, or ADMM-Plus, on June 16, U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin pushed Washington's vision of a free and open Indo-Pacific. His Chinese counterpart, Gen. Wei Fenghe, vowed to protect Beijing's "core interests." The world has heard both points countless times.

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