Category Archives: On this day in SEA history

On 17 August in Southeast Asian history

1947-08-17 Indépendance


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Updated on August 17, 2019

1798: The Vietnamese Roman Catholics report a Marian apparition in Quảng Trị, an event which is called Lady of La Vang

1938: Birth of Abu Bakar Bashir, spiritual leader of the Islamist terrorist movement Jemaah Islamiyah

1945: Sukarno proclaims Indonesia independence

1947-08-17 Indépendance

1945: General Leclerc is appointed commander in chief for French forces in Far East, and Admiral  d’Argenlieu administrator of French Indo-China

1945: President Jose P. Laurel announces the dissolution of the Republic of the Philippines established during the Japanese occupation

1949: Death of Gregorio Perfecto, Filipino jurist & politician, born on November 28, 1891

1950: The United States of Indonesia changes itself in the Republic (united) of Indonesia

1953: Birth of Korrie Layun Rampan, Indonesian author, poet, and critic who died on November 19, 2015

1960: Indonesia break up its diplomatic relations with Netherlands

1970: Death of Rattana Pestonji, Thai filmmaker, born on May 22, 1908

1973: The United States and Thailand agree to begin negotiations on the reduction of American troops in Thailand

1991: Birth of Qory Sandioriva, Indonesian beauty queen, Puteri Indonesia 2009

1996: Birth of Ella Cruz, Filipina child actress

1999: Sellapan Rama Nathan is elected president of Singapore

2009: Thousands of supporters of Thailand’s former prime minister, Thaksin Shinawatra, have joined a rally in Bangkok to present a petition to the king, seeking a royal pardon for his 2008 corruption conviction

2015 : A bomb explodes close to a shrine in the centre of Thailand’s capital, Bangkok, killing at least 19 people and injuring more than 100


Holidays and observances

Indonesia : Independence Day

On 16 August in Southeast Asian history


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Updated on August 16, 2019

1891: The Basilica of San Sebastian in Manila, the first all-steel church in Asia, is officially inaugurated and blessed

1945: Thailand denounces its declaration of war on Allies

1945: Following the Japanese capitulation, beginning of the Vietnamese August Revolution

1964: After a January 30 coup d’état Duong Van Minh is replaced by General Nguyen Khanh as President of South Vietnam. A new constitution is established with aid from the U.S. Embassy

1966: The House Un-American Activities Committee begins investigations of Americans who have aided the Viet Cong. The committee intends to introduce legislation making these activities illegal. Anti-war demonstrators disrupt the meeting and 50 people are arrested

2001: In a speech, Indonesian president Megawati Sukarnoputri apologies for human rights in Aceh and Irian Jaya but excludes independence

On 15 August in Southeast Asian history


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Updated on August 15, 2019

1939: Foundation at Rangoun of the Communist Party of Burma (6 members). Aung San is elected General Secretary

1950 Sukarno proclaims the unitary Republic of Indonesia and becomes its first President

1962: Signature of the agreement on Western New Guinea between the Netherlands and Indonesia. The territory will be administrated by the United Nations up to May 1, 1963, then by Indonesia up to a referendum late 1969

1973: The United States bombing of Cambodia ends

1995: Ven. Thich Quang Do and five other monks and laity are tried by the People’s Court of Ho Chi Minh City and convicted of « sabotaging government policies and damaging the interests of the state. » Ven. Thich Quang Do received a prison term of five years!topic/soc.culture.vietnamese/fXo9OvrmsuQ

Thich Quang Do 2

2005: Agreement between the Free Aceh Movement (Gam) and the Indonesian government

2018: Cambodia ruling party wins all seats in parliament: Election committee


On 14 August in Southeast Asian history


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Updated on August 14, 2019

1642: Dutch navigator Abel Tasman sail from Jakarta with two ships. He will discover several islands, one of them will be named Tasmania

1898: End of the siege of Manila by the US forces led by General Wesley Merrit

1945: The Viet Minh launches August Revolution amid the political confusion and power vacuum engulfing Vietnam

1945: Son Ngoc Thanh becomes prime minister of Cambodia

1973: US bombing of Cambodia comes to a halt

1982: Death of Mahasi Sayadaw, Burmese monk, born on July 29, 1904

2008: Cambodia and Thailand reach a deal to withdraw their troops from disputed temple

2010: Summer Youth Olympic Games, first ever Youth Olympics, officially starts in Singapore

2011: Myanmar opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi maids her first political trip outside the nation’s main city since her release from seven years of house arrest


Holidays and observances

Indonesia: Pramuka Day

On 13 August in Southeast Asian history


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Upgrated on August 13, 2019

1898: Mock battle of Manila won on the Spanish. Start of the American occupation

1945: In Laos, foundation of the anti-French Lao Issara movement

1945: In Vietnam, the National Insurrection Committee orders a general uprising

1950: US President Harry Truman gives military aid to Vietnamese regime of Bao-Dai

1965: In Vietnam, US Marine Corps launches a massive operation with 76 anti-SAM mission, but it fails

1966: Prince Norodom Sihanouk, ruler of neutral Cambodia, criticizes the United States

1972: In Vietnam War, communist sappers raid Long Binh ammunition dump

1990: Birth of Shila, Malaysian pop singer-songwriter

2015 : Myanmar President Thein Sein consolidates his power in the country’s ruling Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP) by forcing out his chief rival Shwe Mann as party chairman

2015 : Prime Minister Hun Sen orders the arrest of opposition senator Hong Sok Hour for “treason” over a fake treaty the senator posted to Facebook that purported to show Heng Samrin, as Cambodia’s head of state in 1979, pledging to dissolve the border between Cambodia and Vietnam


Holidays and observances

Laos: Lao Issara, Day of the Free Laos

On 12 August in Southeast Asian history


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Upgrated on August 12, 2019

1902: Birth of Mohammad Hatta, Indonesian vice-president (1945-1956) who died on March 14, 1980

1907: Birth of Benjamin Henry Sheares, second President of Singapore (1971-1981), who died on May 12, 1981

1910: Birth of Yusof bin Ishak, first President of Singapore (1965-1970), who died on November 23, 1970

1932: Birth of Queen Sirikit, former queen of Thailand

1955: In Indonesia, Masyumi-led government takes power just before elections. Harahap is Prime Minister

1969: In South Vietnam, Viet Cong launch a new offensive

1969: Birth of Aga Muhlach, Filipino actor

1984: Birth of Marian Rivera, a Philippine actress

1988: General Sein Lwin, elected the 6th president of the Union of Burma on July 27, is forced to resign after street demonstration

2004: Lee Hsien Loong is appointed Prime Minister of Singapore, succeeding Goh Chok Tong

2008: Thailand’s Supreme court issues arrest warrants for former PM Thaksin and his wife after they fled to Britain

2009: Indonesia’s Constitutional Court rejected opposition complaints of irregularities surrounding last month’s presidential polls, confirming Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono’s re-election

2011: Aung San Suu Kyi’s NLD movement should join Burma’s « national reconciliation », the government has said in its first-ever news conference

2012: Myanmar opposition icon Aung San Suu Kyi meets president for first time as parliamentarian

2018: Vietnam communist war hero turned dissident Bui Tin dies aged 90


Holidays and observances

Thailand: HM the Queen’s Birthday and National Mother’s Day

On 11 August in Southeast Asian history


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Updated on August 11, 2019

1687: Siamese King Narai, upon advice of Constantine Phaulkon, issues a declaration of war against the English East India Company, though not the English government

1786: Captain Francis Light established the British colony of Penang in Malaysia

1863: To prevent Siam and Annam attacks, Cambodian king Norodom I sign a Protectorate agreement with France

1911: Birth of Thanom Kittikachorn, twice premier of Thailand, who died on June 16, 2004

1948: Musso, former PKI leader from the 1920s, arrives in Yogya after spending twelve years in the Soviet Union. Sjarifuddin (former PM) announces that he has been an underground member of PKI (Communist Party of Indonesia)

1954: A formal peace takes hold Indochina, ending more than seven years of fighting between the French and the Communist Vietminh

1959: Laos appeals the United Nations on its territory violations by North Vietnam

1966: After the Confrontasi over Borneo, Malaysia and Indonesia, by the Jakarta Accord, normalize their diplomatic relations

Malaisie 1966-08-11 Fin Konfrontasi

1968: Birth of Noordin Mohammad Top, Malaysian Islamist terrorist, killed on September 17, 2009

1972: The last United States ground combat unit depart South Vietnam

1975: The US vetoes the proposed admission of North and South Vietnam to the United Nations. The Security Council had already rejected South Korea application

1975: Governor Mario Lemos Pires of Portuguese Timor abandons the capital Dili, following a coup by the Timorese Democratic Union (UDT) and the outbreak of civil war between UDT and Fretilin

1993: Birth of Gita Gutawa, Indonesian singer-songwriter and actress

2002: In Indonesia, the People’s Representative Council (DRP) unanimously decides that starting 2004 the president and vice-president will be direcly elected by the people

2003: Jemaah Islamiyah leader Riduan Isamuddin, better known as Hambali, in charge of the Bali attack (202 killed) is arrested in Bangkok, Thailand

2009: Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, the Burma pro-democracy leader, is sentenced to three years of hard labor for violating the terms of her house arrest, but her sentence is quickly commuted to a new term of house arrest of up to 18 months

2015 : The Indonesian Supreme Court orders the family of former president Suharto to pay back to the state Rp. 4.4 trillion ($324 million) in funds misappropriated during the late strongman’s lengthy reign

2017: Cambodian PM accuses Laos of border violation, mobilising troops


On 10 August in Southeast Asian history


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Updated on August 10, 2019

941: Birth of Le Hoan, emperor of Vietnam who died in 1005

1519: Ferdinand Magellan’s five ships set sail from Seville to circumnavigate the globe. The Basque second in command Sebastian Elcano will complete the expedition after Magellan’s death in the Philippines

1932: Birth of Gaudencio Rosales, Filipino cardinal and Archbishop of Manila

1947: Birth of Anwar Ibrahim, Malaysian politician, jailed leader of the opposition

1953: During the First Indochina War, end of Operation Camargue against the Viet Minh in central Vietnam which started on July 28

1954: Agreement between Netherlands and Indonesia that abrogates the Union linking the two countries

1955: Vietnamese Prime Minister Ngo Ding Diem says that the general elections on reunification will not be organized so long the communist regime will refuse to his people democratic rights and human rights

1961: In Vietnam War, first use of the Agent Orange by the U.S. Army

1972: North Vietnamese forces attempt to cut off Saigon

1984: Birth of Mariel Rodriguez, Filipino TV host

1998: Royal Proclamation of HRH Prince Al-Muhtadee Billah as the Crown Prince of Brunei,_Prince

2011: King Bhumibol Adulyadej swears in Thailand’s new cabinet, to be led by Yingluck Shinawatra, 44, the kingdom’s first female prime minister


On 9 August in Southeast Asian history

1965-08-09 independence


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Updated on August 9, 2019

1683: By a charter, the British Crown gives the power to the East India Company to declare and make war and peace in Asia

1927: Death of Cambodian king Sisowath. His son Sisowath Monivong becomes  king of Cambodia

1932: Birth of Anand Panyarachun, 18th Thai Prime Minister 1991-1992

1945: Sukarno, Hatta, and Radjiman Wediodiningrat are flown by the Japanese to Vietnam to meet with Marshal Terauchi. There they are informed of the collapse of Japanese forces, and that Japan will grant Indonesia independence on August 24

1952: Birth of Prateep Ungsongtham Hata, Thai activist


1960: In Laos, coup d’état of neutralist Captain Kong Le

1965: Expelled by the Malaysian Federation, Singapore proclaims its independence with Yusuf bin Ishak as its first president

1965-08-09 independence

1967: Important US bombing on North Vietnam, up to August 11

1976: Great-Britain establishes  diplomatic relations with Kampuchéa

2001: Indonesian president Megawati Sukarnoputri announces the list of her governement privigiling technocrats over politicians


Holidays and observances

National Day, celebrates the independence of Singapore from Malaysia in 1965


On 8 August in Southeast Asian history


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Updated on August 8, 2019

1967: Foundation at Bangkok of the Association of South-East Asian Nations (Asean) by Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore and Thailand

1967-08-08 signature


1978: Opening of in Hanoi between China and Vietnam on the situation of the Chinese origin Vietnamese in Vietnam

1988: The « 8888 Uprising » occurs in Burma

1990: China and Indonesia restore diplomatic relations interrupted since October 1967

1991: In Vietnam, Vo Van Kiet is elected prime minister (until September 25, 1997)

2000: Malaysian former prime minister Anwar Ibrahim is sentenced to nine years in prison for sodomy

 2013: Politicians, Buddhist monks and thousands of Burmese citizens attend rallies in Yangon to mark the 25th anniversary of the brutal « 8888 » crackdown on student protests

 2017: ASEAN celebrates 50th anniversary