Asia Pacific 1963: Formation of Malaysia
In 1961 Indonesia attacked Dutch New Guinea. The dispute was resolved by the United Nations, which transferred the territory to the Indonesians in 1963. Meanwhile Singapore and British Borneo had agreed to merge with the recently independent Federation of Malaya to form the new state of Malaysia. Indonesian opposition to this move led to a 3 year confrontation, which Malaysia won with Commonwealth support (although Singapore left the federation in 1965).
? Apr 1959 North Vietnam begins infiltrating South▲
The Worker’s Party of Vietnam formed in South Vietnam, Communist underground activity increased, and Viet Minh troops began to return.
28 Jul 1959 Ho Chi Minh trail opens▲
North Vietnamese and Pathet Lao gain control of Laos-Vietnam border and began moving troops and supplies into South Vietnam.
20 Oct–21 Nov 1962 Sino-Indian War▲
In 1957, the People’s Republic of China began building a road across Aksai Chin, a Himalayan region also claimed by India, prompting the Indians to increase troop numbers and border patrols in the area. On 20 October 1962, the Chinese launched two attacks against India—one in Aksai Chin, the other 1000 km east on the also-disputed North-East Frontier Agency (NEFA). After overwhelming the Indian positions, the Chinese declared a unilateral ceasefire, withdrawing from NEFA but retaining their hold over Aksai Chin.
20 Jan 1963–11 Aug 1966 Konfrontasi▲
After Malaya, and the British colonies of Singapore, North Borneo, and Sarawak agreed to unite to create Malaysia, Indonesia—whose leader, Sukarno, considered Malaysia a British puppet state—waged undeclared low level warfare in Borneo and, later, Malaya. British and Commonwealth forces supported Malaysia and helped fend off the Indonesian attacks. After protracted warfare, Indonesia agreed to formally recognize Malaysia in August 1966.
1 May 1963 Cession of West New Guinea▲
Following their seven-month transitional administration, the United Nations Temporary Executive Authority transferred authority over West New Guinea to the Republic of Indonesia. To fulfill the 1962 New York Agreement, the Act of Free Choice referendum was held in 1969, but with only 1,026 elders selected by the Indonesian military allowed to vote. After the elders controversially rejected independence, the territory was formally incorporated into Indonesia as Irian Barat province.
16 Sep 1963 Formation of Malaysia▲
Malaya and the British colonies of North Borneo, Sarawak, and Singapore joined to form the independent Federation of Malaysia. The date of 31 August 1963 had initially been chosen for the formation of Malaysia to coincide with the independence day of Malaya and the British giving self-rule to Sarawak and North Borneo, but was postponed after opposition from Indonesia.