Clinton: U.S. to strengthen leadership role in Asia

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U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said on Thursday that almost two years of intensive engagement efforts by the Obama administration with Asia is aimed at sustaining and strengthening America's leadership role in the region.

Clinton made the remarks in her speech on U.S. Asia strategy in Honolulu, Hawaii, where she started her sixth Asia trip on her tenure.

She said U.S. goals in Asia include sustaining and strengthening U.S. leadership role, improving security, heightening prosperity, and promoting U.S. values in the region.

Clinton said the United States has practiced an active form of "forward-deployed diplomacy" in Asia, through which high-ranking officials and development experts have been to "every corner and every capital" of the Asia-Pacific region.

"Because we know much of the history in the 21st century will be written in Asia. This region will see the most transformative economic growth on the planet. Most of its cities will become global centers for commerce and culture," she said.

It is widely believed that the re-engagement efforts by the Obama administration is meant to restore U.S. influence in Asia which is more or less ignored by the Bush administration.

Clinton outlined three pillars of the U.S. strategy in Asia, namely relations with U.S. allies, new partners and key regional institutions.

She also talked about India and China, saying the rise of the two "is reshaping the world."

"Our ability to cooperate effectively with these two countries will be a critical test of our leadership," she said.

In her Asia tour, Clinton will visit Vietnam, Cambodia, Malaysia, Papua New Guinea, New Zealand and Australia.

Besides Clinton's lengthy trip, U.S. President Barack Obama will visit India, Indonesia, South Korea and Japan next month.

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