Asia summit spotlight on terror attacks

Terrorism is continuing to preoccupy Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and other leaders as they gather for regional talks following fresh attacks.


Malaysia’s Prime Minister Najib Razak opened the 10-nation ASEAN meetings on Saturday by condemning terror wherever it occurs – in Paris or in Mali, where a hotel siege claimed at least 21 lives.

The groups responsible “do not represent any race, religion or creed”, Mr Najib said.

Security is tight with the presence of world leaders in Kuala Lumpur and unconfirmed police intelligence tipping Islamic State and Philippines-based radicals have suicide bombers around the city.

Mr Turnbull arrived for a program of bilateral talks on Saturday, meeting leaders from China and Cambodia, and was expected to meet representatives from South Korea and Vietnam.

Meeting China’s Premier Li Keqiang, Mr Turnbull remarked on the free trade agreement, a deal already seeing great benefits, he said, the visit last year of President Xi Jinping and co-operation between naval forces.

“There is intense co-operation and growing understanding between Australia and China,” Mr Turnbull said.

Longstanding disputes over South China Sea territorial claims also loom over the Kuala Lumpur talks.

On Sunday, Mr Turnbull is due to meet Mr Najib and join the expanded 18-country East Asia Summit with US President Barack Obama and India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi among others.

The East Asia Summit:

– comprises the 10 ASEAN countries: Brunei, Myanmar, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam – plus Australia, China, India, Japan, New Zealand, South Korea, Russia and the US.