Southeast Asia or Southeastern Asia is a subregion of Asia, consisting of the countries that are geographically south of China, east of India, west of New Guinea and north of Australia. The region lies on the intersection of geological plates, with heavy seismic and volcanic activity.
Southeast Asia consists of two geographic regions: Mainland Southeast Asia, also known as Indochina, comprising Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar (Burma), Thailand, Vietnam and Peninsular Malaysia, and Maritime Southeast Asia, comprising Brunei, East Malaysia, East Timor, Indonesia, Philippines, Christmas Island, and Singapore.
The major religions are Islam and Buddhism, followed by Christianity. However, a wide variety of religions are found throughout the region, including many Hindu and animist-influenced practices.
Definitions of "Southeast Asia" vary, but most definitions include the area represented by the countries and territories listed below. All of the countries excluding East Timor are members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). The area, together with part of South Asia, was widely known as the East Indies or simply the Indies until the 20th century. Christmas Island and the Cocos (Keeling) Islands are considered part of Southeast Asia though they are governed by Australia. Sovereignty issues exist over some islands in the South China Sea. Papua New Guinea has stated that it might join ASEAN, and is currently an observer
- East Timor