East Timor and Democracy

One would think that being a struggling but generally successful new democracy would make it easy to find like-minded allies and build relationships. Not so for Timor-Leste. The country has run into obstacles joining ASEAN, whose rules require members to reach consensus on letting more countries into the club. For all that many ASEAN countries are technically democracies, East Timor’s actually progress in achieving meaningful measures of transparency are cause for alarm for some potential regional allies.

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