Bangkok, Thailand – The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) will send fact-finding missions to Timor-Leste in connection with the country's bid for membership in the regional bloc, according to Thai Prime Minister Prayut Chan-ocha.
"We were pleased to note the progress made on the consideration of Timor-Leste's application for Asean membership..." Prayut said in a statement at the end of the 34th Asean Summit.
Timor-Leste's application for membership has been pending since 2011.
The Philippines supports Timor-Leste's bid to become part of Asean, but other members object on the ground that it is not yet developed enough to fulfill its obligations as part of the regional bloc. – Leila B. Salaverria