News / Asia

Asia Welcomes Obama Re-Election

US President's Re-election Welcomed in Asiai
|| 0:00:00
X
November 07, 2012 11:25 PM
World leaders across Asia have congratulated U.S. President Barack Obama on his re-election. As VOA's Pam Dockins explains, while many in the region have responded favorably to an Obama second term, some say the president has unfinished business.

US President's Re-election Welcomed in Asia

William Ide
Countries across Asia are welcoming the re-election of President Barack Obama and many have responded to the election results by voicing their desire to improve ties with Washington. There is one relationship in the region that many feel is key for Obama to get right during his second term in office and that is Washington’s ties with China.

It is clear from China’s official and initial response to the results that it wants the two countries ties to improve and is aware of how broad the impact of relations can be.

Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei says China is willing to work together with the United States, look to the future and continue to push forward cooperation to better serve the people of both countries and the world.

As China’s influence in Asia grows, the country is becoming increasingly assertive in its territorial claims. This has put it at odds at times with its neighbors and the United States.

At the same time, the United States launched a new policy in Asia earlier this year that seeks to refocus its attention on Asia, the so-called "pivot to Asia." The shift is being welcomed by several countries in the region.

Thitinan Pongsudhirak is the director of Chulalongkorn University's Institute of Security and International Studies.

"President Obama's administration has treated Southeast Asia as a region, not just as a system of hub and spokes traditionally in U.S. foreign policy," he said. "But, as a region, very sophisticated this time. And, he's building on that. At the same time, it's also designed to counter-balance China."

Japan, which has seen itself increasingly embroiled in a dispute with China in recent months about islands in the East China Sea, welcomes the president’s re-election and his efforts to put more emphasis on the Asian region.

Japanese Chief Cabinet Secretary Osamu Fujimura says that, as the security environment in East Asia steadily gets worse, the importance of the Japan-U.S. alliance is increasing. He says that Japan hopes President Obama will continue to develop this alliance.

South Korea has also welcomed the re-election of  Obama. A spokesperson says President Lee Myung-bak sent a congratulatory letter that praised relations with Washington as having become more steady under President Obama.

And, in Burma, where the United States has boosted trade and political ties following the country’s political reforms, authorities say Obama’s victory means they can build on the relationship, rather than starting over with a new administration under Mitt Romney.

Zaw Htay, the director of the Burmese President Thein Sein’s office, says he believes the two countries’ relationship can be stronger than before. He says Obama’s foreign policy on Burma is supported by both the House and Senate.  

Out on the streets in Beijing, most were glad to hear that President Obama was re-elected, but it was also clear that some felt the two countries still needed to improve ties.

Guan, a 28-year-old trader, says he supports Obama. Guan says that, although he does not feel there are any huge issues between China and the U.S., there are some sensitive issues like the Diaoyu Islands in which there are some differences. He adds that there might also be some matters related to trade, for example, in which the United States might interfere a bit too much.

Other Beijing residents felt that the two countries are suffering a cultural disconnect, that they really did not understand one another. But, they say the fact that Obama has been re-elected will give the two countries more time to improve relations.

You May Like

Video Migrants Caught in No-Man's Land In French Port

The deaths of hundreds of migrants in the Mediterranean this week has only recast the spotlight on the perils of reaching 'Fortress Europe' More

Video Westgate Mall Attack Survivors Confront Painful Memories

On anniversary of terror attack, survivors discuss how they have coped with trauma they experienced that day More

New Hints That Dark Matter Exists

New evidence from International Space Station hints at existence of dark matter and dark energy More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Migrants Caught in No-Man's Land Called Calaisi
X
Lisa Bryant
September 19, 2014 5:04 PM
The deaths of hundreds of migrants in the Mediterranean this week has only recast the spotlight on the perils of reaching Europe. And for those forunate enough to reach a place like Calais, France, only find that their problems aren't over. Lisa Bryant has the story.
Video

Video Migrants Caught in No-Man's Land Called Calais

The deaths of hundreds of migrants in the Mediterranean this week has only recast the spotlight on the perils of reaching Europe. And for those forunate enough to reach a place like Calais, France, only find that their problems aren't over. Lisa Bryant has the story.
Video

Video Westgate Siege Anniversary Brings Back Painful Memories

One year after it happened, the survivors of the terror attack on Nairobi's Westgate Shopping Mall still cannot shake the images of that tragic incident. For VOA, Mohammed Yusuf tells the story of victims still waiting for the answer to the question 'how could this happen?'
Video

Video Militant Assault in Syria Displaces Thousands of Kurds

A major assault by Islamic State militants on Kurds in Syria has sent a wave of new refugees to the Turkish border, where they were stopped by Turkish border security. Turkey is already hosting about 700,000 Syrian refugees who fled the civil war between the government and the opposition. But the government in Ankara has a history of strained relations with Turkey's Kurdish minority. Zlatica Hoke reports Turkey is asking for international help.
Video

Video CERN Accelerator Back in Business

The long upgrade of the Large Hadron Collider is over. The scientific instrument responsible for the discovery of the Higgs boson -- the so-called "God particle" -- is being brought up to speed in time for this month's 60th anniversary of the European Organization for Nuclear Research, known by its French acronym CERN. Physicists hope the accelerator will help them uncover more secrets about the origins of the universe. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Whaling Summit Votes to Uphold Ban on Japan Whale Hunt

The International Whaling Commission, meeting in Slovenia, has voted to uphold a court ruling banning Japan from hunting whales in the Antarctic Ocean. Conservationists hailed the ruling as a victory, but Tokyo says it will submit revised plans for a whale hunt in 2015. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Russian Economy Reeling After New Western Sanctions

A new wave of Western sanctions is hitting Russia’s economy hard. State-owned energy firms continue to bleed profits and Russia’s national currency plunged to a new low this week after the U.S. and the European Union announced new sanctions to punish Russia's aggressive stance in eastern Ukraine. But as Mil Arcega reports, the sanctions could also prove costly for European and American companies.
Video

Video Belgian Researchers Discover Way to Block Cancer Metastasis

Cancer remains one of the deadliest diseases, despite many new methods to combat it. Modern medicine has treatments to prevent the growth of primary tumor cells. But most cancer deaths are caused by metastasis, the stage when primary tumor cells change and move to other parts of the body. A team of Belgian scientists says it has found a way to prevent that process. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Mogadishu's Flood of Foreign Workers Leaves Somalis Out of Work

Unemployment and conflict has forced many young Somalians out of the country in search of a better life. But a newfound stability in the once-lawless nation has created hope — and jobs — which, some say, are too often being filled by foreigners. Abdulaziz Billow reports from Mogadishu.
Video

Video A Dinosaur Fit for Land and Water

Residents and tourists in Washington D.C. can now examine a life-size replica of an unusual dinosaur that lived almost a hundred million years ago in northern Africa. Scientists say studying the behemoth named Spinosaurus helps them better understand how some prehistoric animals adapted to life on land and in water. The Spinosaurus replica is on display at the National Geographic museum. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Iraqi Kurdistan Church Helps Christian Children Cope find shelter in churches in the Kurdish capital, Irbil

In the past six weeks, tens of thousands of Iraqi Christians have been forced to flee their homes by Islamic State militants and find shelter in churches in the Kurdish capital, Irbil. Despite U.S. airstrikes in the region, the prospect of people returning home is still very low and concerns are starting to grow over the impact this is having on the displaced youth. Sebastian Meyer reports from Irbil on how one church is coping.
Video

Video NASA Picks Boeing, SpaceX to Carry Astronauts Into Space

The U.S. space agency, NASA, has chosen Boeing and SpaceX companies to build the next generation of spacecraft that will carry U.S. astronauts to the International Space Station by the year 2017. The deal with private industry enables NASA to end its dependence on Russia to send space crews into low Earth orbit and back. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Future of Ukrainian Former President's Estate Uncertain

More than six months after Ukraine's former President Viktor Yanukovych fled revolution to Russia, authorities have yet to gain control of his palatial estate. Protesters occupy the grounds and opened it to tourists but they are also refusing to turn it over to the state. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Mezhigirya, just north of Kyiv.


Carnage and mayhem are part of daily life in northern Nigeria, the result of a terror campaign by the Islamist group Boko Haram. Fears are growing that Nigeria’s government may not know how to counter it, and may be making things worse. More

AppleAndroid