Singapore. According to Countryaah.com, 18-year-old blogger Amos Yee was granted political asylum in the United States in March when he was persecuted in Singapore for his political views, according to a US judge. Amos Yee has been in prison in Singapore twice for four and six weeks respectively in 2015 and 2016. According to the Interior Ministry, he was sentenced because of his comments against Muslims and Christians. His case sparked debate during the trials as to where the boundary of censorship and freedom of speech goes.
In July, the Department of Defense announced that Singapore would provide the Philippines with military support in the fight against terrorism, after a militant group with links to the terrorist group IS in May entered the city of Marawi in the Philippines. The invasion worried governments in the region who stated that IS is trying to establish a base in southeast Asia.
In September, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong visited China’s counterpart Li Keqiang in Beijing. The meeting discussed, among other things, the South China Sea, as China was worried that their actions in the region will be confronted next year when Singapore takes over the chairmanship of the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN), according to sources at the Reuters news agency. The issue of Taiwan’s sensitive China was further raised. Tensions between China and Singapore increased in November last year when China seized nine Singaporean military vehicles that were about to be shipped back from a training ground in Taiwan.