Textbook approach to Asia's disputes


This ambitious task is taking place within the Association of South East Asian Nations (Asean) group of countries - Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.

Textbook experts from the region met in Bangkok in Thailand last year to look at the idea of a common history.

“There are still fundamental miscommunications, deeply-held prejudices and emotionally-charged perceptions which we have to overcome,” a former Asean secretary-general, Dr Surin Pitsuwan, told the meeting, organised by Unesco…

The idea of a common Asean history textbook emerged after the Preah Vihear temple dispute between Cambodia and Thailand. Both claimed sovereignty over temple land on their common border.

I’m a little skeptical about how far this will go, but it’s a noble goal.


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