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The Asian side of the world - II

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Jean-François Sabouret

Part Two. National challenges and strategies

The Philippines: a never-ending democratic transition

Dominique Caouette

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April 2012

On 25 February 2012, President Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino, son of former president Corazon “Cory” Cojuangco Aquino and of the assassinated senator Benigno “Ninoy” Aquino II who was killed under the Ferdinand Marcos dictatorship, opened commemorative ceremonies for the EDSA people’s revolt. EDSA is the acronym for a wide artery of the capital, the Epifanio de los Santos Avenue, where over 1 million people mobilized in February 1986 to force the departure of the dictator Marcos. The EDSA uprising, which preceded the 1989 Tiananmen Square protests and the more recent Arab Spring wave of protests, is still remembered as the symbol of a determined, militant citizenship, ready to defy the tanks and to offer flowers to soldiers. Nonetheless, 26 years later, have the Philippines really changed?

Aquino, who was elected in May 2010 with a strong mandate, has officially been in power since 30 June. Since then, he has steered the country like a captain in a dense, omnipresent fog. His asc...

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