Southeast Asia’s strongmen revel in Trump victory

Region’s autocratic leaders look for change in US approach after Obama years
From left: Cambodia's Prime Minister Hun Sen; Thailand prime minister Prayuth Chan-ocha; Philippine president Rodrigo Duterte; Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak
From left: Hun Sen of Cambodia; Thailand's Prayuth Chan-ocha; Rodrigo Duterte of the Philippines and Malaysia's Najib Razak © Getty Images; Reuters; AP; AFP

Donald Trump’s election win has thrilled autocratic leaders in several countries in Southeast Asia, an area of strategic and security focus during the Obama years. Some have bridled in the past against US criticism of their human rights and corruption records. Most are strongmen who might see in Mr Trump’s victory a tacit endorsement of their tactics — and a repudiation of the outgoing Washington administration’s agenda.