The US, India, Australia and Japan collectively came out in strong support of an ASEAN-led mechanism to preserve and promote rules-based order in the Indo-Pacific region where China is flexing its muscles.
Senior officials of the four countries, at a meeting in Bangkok in Friday, also highlighted their efforts to maintain universal respect for international law and freedom of navigation and overflight in the region, an official US statement said.
Welcoming ASEAN’s efforts to develop an Indo-Pacific outlook, the four countries affirmed their strong support for ASEAN centrality and ASEAN-led regional architecture, as well as their support for other regional institutions, including the Indian Ocean Rim Association and Pacific Islands Forum, it said.
The 10-nation Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) is considered one of the most influential groupings in the region and India and several other countries including the US, China, Japan and Australia are its dialogue partners. Read More