Tuesday, 26 September 2023
WorldPhilippines Ready to Become ASEAN Chair in 2026 Replace Myanmar

Philippines Ready to Become ASEAN Chair in 2026 Replace Myanmar


The Philippine government has stated that it is ready to become Chair of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) in 2026, replacing Myanmar. This was conveyed when the bloc of Southeast Asian countries was trying to find ways to interact with the rulers of the Myanmar junta.

As reported AFPTuesday (5/9/2023), Myanmar has been hit by deadly violence since the military coup was launched in 2021 which overthrew Aung San Suu Kyi’s government and a strict crackdown on freedom of expression became rampant.

“I am pleased to announce that the Philippines is ready to lead and chair ASEAN in 2026,” said Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. in front of the leaders of Southeast Asian countries at the ASEAN Summit in Jakarta on Tuesday (5/9) local time.

“We will strengthen the foundation of our community development and navigate ASEAN as we begin a new chapter,” he said in a statement released by the Philippine Presidential Palace.

Marcos Jr. did not say further about why Manila took over the Chair of ASEAN from Myanmar.

But two Southeast Asian diplomats attending the ASEAN summit said the move had been approved by leaders, so the crisis would not hijack the bloc’s agenda and prevent ‘external partners’ from coming to Myanmar to attend their meetings.

“It has been decided. It was announced at the leaders’ meeting and there are no objections,” said one diplomat who declined to be named.

According to the Southeast Asian diplomat, ASEAN wrote to the Philippines to ask if the country would be willing to accept the chairmanship for 2026 and Manila accepted the offer.

Read the full news on the next page.

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