April 26, 2019

Asia

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UK tourist Sam Oliver wins Australian defamation case

Asia
A British tourist who was acquitted of assaulting Australia's former Rugby Sevens captain James Stannard has won a defamation case against a TV network.Sam Oliver, from Newcastle, said Australia's Nine Network had wrongly depicted him as being guilty of a "cowardly" criminal act in Sydney.He was found not guilty last year.On Friday, a judge rejected Nine's argument that its news report of the verdict was fair - ordering it to pay Mr Oliver A$100,000 (£54,000; $70,000). The news report had described the incident as "a coward punch that ended the career" of Mr Stannard. It was introduced with the words "no penalty".Nine argued in court that it was a fair report and an expression of opinion relating to a matter of public interest....
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Sri Lanka bombings ringleader died in hotel attack, president says

Asia
The alleged ringleader behind Sri Lanka's Easter Sunday bombings was killed in the attacks, President Maithripala Sirisena said.Mr Sirisena said Zahran Hashim, a radical preacher, died at the Shangri-La hotel in the capital, Colombo. He said Hashim led the attack on the popular tourist hotel, accompanied by a second bomber known as "Ilham".At least 250 people died in the wave of bombings on Sunday, which targeted churches and hotels in Colombo.Mr Sirisena also said that Sri Lankan intelligence services believed around 130 suspects linked to Islamic State (IS) group were in the country and that police were hunting 70 who were still at large. The president did not clarify what role Hashim took in the Shangri-La bombing - one of six attacks on Sunday that terrorised Sri Lanka's Christian community....
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Meet the 50 top-funded startups and tech companies in Singapore

Asia
Here are the companies in Singapore that are attracting tons of investors and have the resources to spend on software, talent, and expansion.
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Torrential rain triggers flooding, evacuations in Jakarta

Asia
JAKARTA: Torrential rain triggered flooding in parts of the Indonesian capital Jakarta overnight, the disaster agency said Friday (Apr 26), forcing the evacuation of residents.Heavy rain pounded the greater Jakarta area, causing the Ciliwung river to burst its banks, and prompting flash flooding in at least 17 communities.Dozens of residents in parts of the capital's east, where flooding occurs frequently during rainy season, were forced to wade through streets filled with 1m high water in places. Images from some parts of the city showed people taking refuge on higher ground with their belongings, while authorities tried to reach hard-hit areas with rubber boats.Public kitchens have been set up in East Jakarta to distribute aid to people affected by the flooding....
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Huawei ban: how Australia becomes increasingly isolated among Five Eyes partners if UK includes Chinese firm in 5G network

Asia
Australian election is scheduled for May 18, creating an opening for Beijing to lobby new government to abandon hardline policy.
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Wanted Sri Lanka radical Zahran Hashim died in hotel attack: President

Asia
COLOMBO: An extremist believed to have played a key role in Sri Lanka's deadly Easter bombings led an attack against a Colombo hotel, the country's president confirmed on Friday (Apr 26). "What intelligence agencies have told me is that Zahran was killed during the Shangri-La attack," President Maithripala Sirisena told reporters, referring to Zahran Hashim, leader of a local extremist group.He added that Hashim led the attack against the high-end hotel and was accompanied by a second bomber, identified as Ilham Ibrahim.He said the information came from military intelligence and was based in part on CCTV footage recovered from the scene.More than 250 people were killed in the attacks against three churches and three hotels. A fourth planned attack on a hotel failed....
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Xi Jinping vows transparency over Belt and Road

Asia
China's President Xi Jinping has sought to ease concerns about its Belt and Road project at a summit in Beijing.Speaking at the forum, Mr Xi vowed to ensure transparency and the "fiscal sustainability" of all projects. The initiative is seen by some as a bid for geopolitical influence and has been criticised for indebting recipient countries.Mr Xi also sought to address key US trade concerns ahead of talks between the two countries next week.Speaking on the second day of the Belt and Road summit, Mr Xi said the aim of the infrastructure programme was "to enhance connectivity and practical cooperation". The ambitious initiative, which is expected to involve more than $1 trillion in investments, has already funded trains, roads, and ports in many countries....
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With 'swagger,' Pompeo navigates tightrope between Trump and world

Asia
WASHINGTON: Brusque and resolute in public, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has succeeded in a task of utmost delicacy - pleasing President Donald Trump, even while being forced to mollify America's often perturbed allies.Pompeo took office on Apr 26 last year, immediately flying off to Europe and the Middle East as he vowed to give the State Department back its "swagger" after his hapless predecessor Rex Tillerson.A full year on the job is no small milestone in the Trump administration, with the mogul turned president notoriously falling out with much of his original team - so much that Trump has since ridiculed Tillerson on Twitter as "dumb as a rock."Pompeo, who had first been CIA director, has been the rare Trump official to stay consistently in his good graces, loyally defending his capricious boss's every decision both to the cameras and startled allies, even after advocating other approaches internally....
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Port Talbot explosion: Two hurt at Tata steelworks

Asia
Two people have been hurt in an explosion at Tata's main Welsh steelworks plant in the early hours.Residents living near the Port Talbot plant spoke of hearing a "massive" blast shortly after 03:30 BST.Images posted on social media show flames at the site and plumes of smoke.Tata Steel said the explosion came from a train used to carry molten metal, but the fires at the plant were now out and all employees had been accounted for.The firm posted on Twitter: "We can confirm two of our employees were slightly injured when there was a spillage of liquid iron while it was travelling to the steel plant."All fires have now been extinguished. A full investigation has begun."Helicopters were circling overhead and South Wales Police said it received "numerous calls" shortly after 03:30 "reporting an explosion"....
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Xi asks for 'fair and friendly' treatment for Chinese

Asia
BEIJING: China's President Xi Jinping on Friday (Apr 26) called for a "fair and friendly" environment for Chinese companies and citizens overseas, as pushback against its tech giants rises and academics find their visas cancelled.Beijing and Washington have been locked in a bruising trade war - which negotiators have been working to resolve - but there has also been a growing strategic rivalry between the world's two largest economies."China's measures to expand opening up are independent choices," Xi told a gathering of 37 world leaders at a summit for his signature Belt and Road Initiative."We also hope that all countries in the world will create a good investment environment, treat Chinese enterprises, international students and scholars equally, and provide a fair and friendly environment," he said....
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Belt and Road Initiative can play important role to strengthen regional, multilateral cooperation: PM Lee

Asia
BEIJING: The global multilateral system has been weakened amid a backlash against globalisation, but China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) can play an important role in reversing that, said Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong on Friday (Apr 26).Speaking at a high-level meeting at the second Belt and Road Forum in Beijing, Mr Lee noted that the multilateral system remains important in solving many of the world’s complex transnational challenges, such as terrorism, climate change and the spread of infectious diseases.“These are only issues that can be solved by countries cooperating within a multilateral framework, because both countries and their problems have become so interconnected and interdependent,” he said....
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US woman wrongly identified as Sri Lanka attack suspect

Asia
Sri Lankan police have apologised after they wrongly identified a US woman as a suspect in the Easter Sunday attacks. Amara Majeed is a Muslim activist and author who wrote a book, titled The Foreigners, to combat stereotypes about Islam."I have this morning been FALSELY identified by the Sri Lankan government as one of the ISIS Easter attackers in Sri Lanka," she tweeted. "What a thing to wake up to!"Around 253 people died and hundreds were injured in the Sri Lanka attacks, where suicide bombers struck several hotels and churches.A photograph of Amara Majeed was released by Sri Lankan authorities identifying her as a suspect linked to the bloodshed.The suspect whose name was released was Fathima Khadiya, but the picture used was that of Baltimore-born Ms Majeed - whose parents are from Sri Lanka. ...
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Taiwan presidential hopeful Gou draws fire for 'harem' comment

Asia
TAIPEI: Taiwan's wealthiest man Terry Gou has sparked criticism after he was quoted dismissing his wife's opposition to his recently announced presidential bid by saying "the harem should not meddle in politics".Gou, the head of tech giant Foxconn, made a surprise announcement last week that he plans to run for president in next January's elections after declaring the sea goddess Matsu urged him to do so.The plain-speaking 69-year-old tycoon is seeking the nomination of the Beijing-friendly Kuomintang (KMT) opposition party for the January polls.But Gou's wife Delia Tseng appears to be none too happy with his foray into politics.In a series of TV interviews aired on Thursday, Gou said Tseng had left him after he made the announcement....
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Pine room and a secret jewel: Japan abdication rituals

Asia
TOKYO: Japan has waited more than two centuries for an emperor to abdicate, but the main ceremony to perform the ritual will take a mere 10 minutes.The solemn rite will take place at precisely 5pm local time on Apr 30 in the 370-square-metre "Matsu-no-Ma" (Room of Pine), considered the most elegant hall in the sumptuous Imperial Palace.It is the only room with wooden floors - made from Japanese zelkova trees - rather than carpet, and the walls are covered with fabric featuring raised pine-leaf motifs.The ceremony will be conducted in the presence of an ancient sword and jewel - part of the imperial regalia - considered crucial evidence of an emperor's legitimacy.The sword and jewel will be brought in boxes into the room but a third element of the regalia, a sacred mirror, never leaves its sanctuary in the palace....
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Sri Lankan police looking for 140 with Islamic State links: President

Asia
COLOMBO: Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena said on Friday (Apr 26) police are looking for 140 people believed to have links with the Islamic State group over the Easter Sunday attacks on churches and hotels that killed at least 253 people.Sirisena told reporters some Sri Lankan youths had been involved with the extremist group since 2013, and that top defence and police chiefs had not shared information with him about the impending attacks.He also blamed Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe's government for weakening the intelligence system by focusing on the prosecution of military officers over alleged war crimes during a decade-long civil war with Tamil separatists. ...
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Sex, casinos and tiger parts: Myanmar's vice-riddled China frontier

Asia
MONGLA, Myanmar: Bentleys and BMW convertibles roll up to the "Venetian Casino" in Mongla on the Myanmar-China border, a melting pot of sex, drugs and gambling on a frontier that has also become a "supermarket" for illegally traded wildlife.This area of Myanmar is largely self-governed - lying within the country's borders but playing by its own rules, nestled in the eastern range of mountains and cut off from the rest of the country.Instead, the region looks to China. The yuan is the currency of choice, most people speak Mandarin and phones connect to Chinese, not Myanmar, networks.It is also the insatiable Chinese demand for illegal wildlife products that is driving the booming trade in Panghsang, a reclusive city to the north of Mongla in territory controlled by the ethnic Wa....
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Japan needs thousands of foreign workers to decommission Fukushima plant, prompting backlash from anti-nuke campaigners and rights activists

Asia
Activists are far from convinced working at the site is safe for anyone and they fear foreign workers will feel “pressured” to ignore the risks if their jobs are at risk.
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‘30 soccer pitches disappear every minute of every day’: tropical forest the size of England was destroyed in 2018

Asia
‘The world’s forests are now in the emergency room. The health of the planet is at stake and band aid responses are not enough,’ says conservation think tank.
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North Korea summit: Kim accuses US of 'bad faith'

Asia
North Korean leader Kim Jong-un has accused the US of acting in "bad faith" during the summit earlier this year with President Donald Trump, according to the Korean Central News Agency.He also said peace in the Korean peninsula would depend entirely on Washington.Mr Kim made his remarks at Thursday's summit with Russia's President Vladimir Putin in Vladivostok.President Putin accepted an invitation to visit North Korea, KCNA reported. The visit would take place "at a convenient time," the news agency added.Kim Jong-un reportedly told Vladimir Putin that "the situation on the Korean peninsula and the region is now at a standstill and has reached a critical point".He warned the situation "may return to its original state as the US took an unilateral attitude in bad faith" during recent talks....
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Xi says will abolish anti-competitive subsidies to Chinese firms

Asia
BEIJING: Chinese President Xi Jinping vowed Friday (Apr 26) to abolish subsidies to firms that impede fair competition - addressing a major bone of contention in US trade talks.Xi repeated past promises to lower tariffs, increase imports and open up more sectors of China's economy to foreign businesses.The pledge comes as top US negotiators prepare to travel to Beijing next week for a new round of talks aimed at resolving a months-long trade war that has hit businesses with tariffs on hundreds of billions of dollars worth of products.One of the key US demands is an end to Chinese government subsidies to the country's companies."We will overhaul and abolish unjustified regulations, subsidies and practices that impede fair competition and distort the market," Xi said at a summit on his Belt and Road global infrastructure project....
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China's Xi defends Belt and Road, says 'not exclusive club'

Asia
BEIJING: Chinese President Xi Jinping sought Friday (Apr 26) to ease growing concerns about his ambitious Belt and Road Initiative, vowing to prevent debt risks and saying his global infrastructure project "is not an exclusive club".Xi made his remarks at a summit on his signature foreign policy, which aims to reinvent the ancient Silk Road to connect Asia to Europe and Africa through massive investments in maritime, road and rail projects.The initiative offers to bring much-needed modern infrastructure to developing countries, but critics say it mainly favours Chinese companies while saddling nations with debt and causing environmental damage.China has rejected accusations that Belt and Road is a "debt trap" and a geopolitical tool for Beijing's ambitions of becoming a global superpower....
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Convenient but controversial: Japan's 24/7 shops under fire

Asia
TOKYO: It may be 1am but Tokyo's omnipresent convenience stores, known as "konbini", are busy with customers dropping in for everything from milk to underwear.Popping in for a cheeky late alcopop at a busy konbini near Tokyo's Ueno Station, Mai Tsumuraya says: "I finish work late ... The supermarket closes early so I come to a convenience store. It's very convenient."Day or night, they are rarely short of customers, but the much-loved stores are now at the centre of a row over whether they should stay open 24 hours a day, every day of the year - a debate that strikes at the heart of crippling labour shortages in ageing Japan.Visitors to Tokyo are often amazed at the sheer volume of stores. There are 56,000 across Japan and in the capital, it is not uncommon to see different konbini at all four corners of a crossroads....
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Sri Lanka did not arrest citizens who joined Islamic State because it is ‘not an offence’ to join foreign terrorist groups, PM says

Asia
Attacks on Easter Sunday killed 253 people – revised down from more than 350. Islamic State has claimed responsibility.
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One Championship launches own movie, TV division

Asia
It hopes to distribute its original shows through TV broadcast partners and digital platforms like Netflix, YouTube, Facebook, and Amazon.
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Complete list of tech and startup events in Singapore

Asia
Mingling or gaining knowledge? We’ve curated for you the most comprehensive list of events in the tech and startup community, sorted by topic and date.
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Prince William visits Christchurch mosque

Asia
Prince William has visited a mosque in Christchurch where 42 people were killed in March's shootings.Giving a speech at Masjid Al Noor on day two of his tour of the country, he called the attacks at two mosques in the city an "unspeakable act of hate". The prince was joined by Imam Gamal Fouda and New Zealand's Prime Minister, Jacinda Ardern.Earlier, he met with survivors of the shootings, in which 50 people were killed.Referring to the far-right gunman behind the shootings, Prince William said he had come to New Zealand to "help you show the world that he failed".He said a "terrorist attempted to sow division and hatred in a place that stands for togetherness and selflessness".Praising the people of New Zealand for their response to the attacks, the duke added: "In a moment of acute pain, you stood up and you stood together. ...
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Sri Lankans in Christchurch mourn after recent attacks

Asia
Sri Lankans living in Christchurch, New Zealand, have been paying their respects after the recent attacks in the city and in their home country.Mourners were shocked after Sunday's attack in Sri Lanka killed over 250 people, just weeks after the Christchurch mosque shootings killed 50....
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North Korea's Kim says US acted in 'bad faith' at Hanoi talks

Asia
VLADIVOSTOK, Russia: At his first summit with Russia's Vladimir Putin, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un accused the United States of acting in "bad faith" at their most recent talks, state media in Pyongyang said on Friday (Apr 26).Kim and Putin met on Thursday in the far eastern Russian port of Vladivostok, for their first summit - squarely aimed at countering US influence as Kim faces off with Donald Trump over Pyongyang's nuclear arsenal. Putin was keen to put Moscow forward as a player in a new global flashpoint - and it appears Kim was eager to take him up on the idea, during talks described by KCNA as "unreserved and friendly".The two leaders greeted each other warmly, shaking hands and sharing smiles, at the start of meetings on an island off Vladivostok that lasted nearly five hours....
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Sri Lanka blast toll revised down to 253 as some 'double-counted'

Asia
COLOMBO: Authorities in Sri Lanka on Thursday (Apr 25) lowered the death toll in a spate of Easter bombings by more than 100 to 253, admitting some of the badly mutilated bodies had been erroneously double-counted.The toll revision will boost the pressure on a government already under fire over its apparent failure to act on intelligence about the attacks, and follows the resignation of a top defence official.The top bureaucrat in the island nation's defence ministry, Hemasiri Fernando, was the first official to step down in the wake of the attacks - the worst since a civil war ended more than a decade ago."Many of the victims were badly mutilated ... There was double counting," the health ministry said in explaining the new death toll of 253, down from 359 announced on Wednesday....
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'I had the perfect family': Victims of the Sri Lanka blasts

Asia
COLOMBO: More than 350 people are now known to have died in a horrifying series of attacks that ripped through Sri Lanka on Easter Sunday (Apr 21).While the majority of victims were Sri Lankans attending church on the Christian holy day, there were also a number of foreign tourists killed, many visiting during the Easter holiday period.Near-simultaneous blasts tore through three high-end hotels popular with foreigners, and three churches packed with worshippers.The government has said the bombers may have been acting in revenge for shootings at two mosques in New Zealand last month which left 50 dead. The Islamic State group has claimed responsibility for the attacks.Here is what we know so far about some of those killed in the blasts. ...
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Sex website shuts down in U.S, blaming 'dumb' trafficking laws

Asia
LOS ANGELES: A popular sex classified website said this week that it was shutting down its services in the United States, citing the likelihood that legal challenges would fail to overturn a landmark package of federal sex trafficking laws passed by Congress a year ago.The decision by MassageRepublic.com marks the latest indication that the Stop Enabling Sex Traffickers Act and Fight Online Sex Trafficking Act, known collectively as FOSTA-SESTA, has made it difficult for websites selling sex to survive in a climate of higher risk for them."When one of these sites shuts down it usually inspires others to shut down," said Rob Spectre, chief executive of the counter-human trafficking technology company Childsafe.AI. "It's another signal of the volatility in this market - there are going to be some wild swings ahead this year."...
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Japan emperor: Why a woman can't take the throne

Asia
The abdication of Emperor Akihito has reignited debate on Japan's male-only succession rule. The BBC's Mariko Oi explains how the future of Japan's imperial family, one of the oldest in the world, may be in doubt if the rule isn't changed.Video by Tessa Wong and Pamela Parker....
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Commentary: Samsung’s gigantic mistake over the Galaxy Fold

Asia
BEIJING: This week was supposed to be a game-changer for Samsung.In the rush to get a 5G smartphone to the market first before all other rivals, South Korean giant Samsung took a major gamble and lost.On Monday (Apr 22), Samsung announced that the retail launch of its first 5G handset, the Galaxy Fold, will be delayed for an unspecified period of time.The folding handset was initially set to officially go on sale on Apr 26. The giant had distributed it to tech reviewers and newsrooms around the world.“We want our customers to have the best experience possible which is why, after initial feedback, we have decided to delay the release of the category-changing Galaxy Fold to make sure it measures up to the high standards we know you expect from us,” Samsung said in a press statement....
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Commentary: Go-Jek and Grab’s two competing visions are knocking heads in Asia

Asia
LONDON: In mid-March, the board of directors of Go-Jek, Indonesia’s homegrown, ride-hailing, delivery and payments company, met in Jakarta to discuss one pressing item of business. Arch rival Grab had just raised US$4.5 billion, massively strengthening its financial muscle. Just weeks earlier, Go-Jek had raised US$1 billion, an amount that originally seemed adequate but by comparison suddenly appeared puny, leaving Go-Jek with half as much money in the bank as Grab.The dilemma for Go-Jek, said one board member, is: The gap in the funding behind the two regional competitors (Grab is based in Singapore) reflects big philosophical differences between their respective investors — whether market share or profitability matters more; if capital or innovation confers a decisive competitive advantage; whether consumer internet companies are natural monopolies or duopolies....
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How the US military's opium war in Afghanistan was lost

Asia
The US has spent $1.5m (£1.15m) a day since 2001 fighting the opium war in Afghanistan. So why is business still booming?It's November 2017. The night vision camera shows a network of streets in a town in Helmand province, the poppy-growing centre of Afghanistan. The camera wheels around the targets before the missiles come arcing in. There are nine strikes in total, each one taking out an individual building in a series of almost simultaneous explosions. This is a jaw-dropping example of precision bombing, using some of the most advanced military technology ever devised, including a B-52 strategic bomber, an F-22 Raptor stealth fighter and an M142 tactical rocket launcher.The video of this attack, in which eight Afghan civilians were killed, was one of a series published online by the American military - vivid evidence of the progress of a year-long bombing campaign code-named "Iron Tempest"....
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No oxygen, no food, no water: ‘Miracle rescue’ for Singapore-based Malaysian climber Chin Wui Kin, who was stranded on Nepal’s Mount Annapurna for two days

Asia
Chin Wui Kin survived without oxygen bottle, food and water for more than 40 hours before being spotted by rescue helicopter.
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US, Britain urge Hong Kong to allow free expression after protesters jailed

Asia
LONDON: The United States and former colonial power Britain on Thursday (Apr 25) voiced alarm over the jailing of leaders of Hong Kong's democracy movement and urged China to allow free expression.Four prominent leaders were jailed on Wednesday over their role in the 2014 Umbrella Movement, which paralysed Hong Kong for months and infuriated Beijing with its show of anger over the city's leadership and direction."The sentences handed to the 'Occupy' activists in Hong Kong are deeply disappointing," British Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt said in a statement on Twitter.Britain said that the "One Country, Two Systems" concept - enshrined in a Joint Declaration under which Britain handed the metropolis to China in 1997 - guaranteed political freedom....
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North Korea 'demanded $2m for care of Otto Warmbier'

Asia
North Korea reportedly billed the US $2m (£1.5m) for the medical care of comatose American student Otto Warmbier.Warmbier was jailed in North Korea in December 2015 during an organised tour and died after being returned the US in a coma after 17 months in detention. North Korea demanded the hospital bill be paid before Warmbier was allowed to return home, the newspaper reports. The White House declined to comment on the report. "We do not comment on hostage negotiations, which is why they have been so successful during this administration," White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said in a statement to CBS on Thursday.The main US representative sent to retrieve Warmbier signed a pledge to pay the medical bill on the orders of US President Donald Trump, the Post said, citing two people familiar with the situation....
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North Korea demands US pay for comatose student's medical bill

Asia
WASHINGTON: North Korea demanded that the United States pay a US$2 million medical bill for US student Otto Warmbier, who went into a coma after being tortured in the totalitarian country, a report said on Thursday (Apr 25).The Washington Post quoted unidentified sources as saying that a US official was made to sign a pledge to pay an invoice for the medical costs before being allowed to fly Warmbier back home from Pyongyang in 2017.The envoy signed the pledge on instructions from President Donald Trump, according to the Post report.It was unclear whether the bill was ever paid, the report said.Warmbier, a University of Virginia student, was imprisoned after being accused of taking down a propaganda poster in his hotel during a tour trip to North Korea. He fell into a coma after apparently being tortured behind bars and died days after arriving back in the United States....
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Sri Lanka attacks: Death toll revised down by 'about 100'

Asia
Sri Lanka has revised down the death toll from Sunday's blasts by more than 100, to "about 253", the health ministry says.It has blamed a calculation error. Suicide bombers struck hotels and churches in the Colombo area and the eastern city of Batticaloa. Hundreds were injured, officials said. Most of those killed were Sri Lankans, but dozens of foreigners were also casualties. Nine people are suspected of carrying out the attacks. Police have continued carrying out raids and have issued photographs of seven people wanted in connection with the attacks. The authorities blamed a local Islamist extremist group, National Thowheed Jamath (NTJ), soon after the blasts but say the bombers must have had outside help. ...
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North Korea insisted US accept US$2 million hospital bill for comatose student Otto Warmbier before letting him go home

Asia
It is unclear whether the Trump administration paid invoice or whether it came up during preparations for summits with Kim Jong-un.
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Handsome Her: Australian vegan café to close after ‘man tax’ furore

Asia
A vegan café in Australia that levied a tax on male customers is to close after becoming the "punching bag of the internet". Handsome Her was accused of reverse sexism after opening in Melbourne in 2017.Its owners provoked debate by offering women priority seating and charging men an extra 18% one week a month.Although non-compulsory, the "man tax" reflected "the gender pay gap", the owners said.Two years on and the owners have announced they will cease trading on 28 April.They made the announcement in the description of a Facebook event created to advertise their last day of business.The reaction to the man tax "showed us how fragile masculinity is and solidified the necessity for us to confront and dismantle patriarchy", they wrote. ...
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Malaysia to implement Vehicle Entry Permit for all foreign vehicles from October

Asia
KUALA LUMPUR: A road transport law that requires all foreign vehicle owners coming into Malaysia to register for a Vehicle Entry Permit (VEP) will be enforced from October.In a statement on Thursday (Apr 25), the Malaysian Ministry of Transport said that the VEP will be issued by the Road Transport Department and can be applied for online in a "simple three-step action". "Only VEP-registered vehicles are allowed entry into Malaysia once it is put into force," it said. The ministry added that the enforcement of VEP will be implemented in phases. "For phase one, requirement of VEP for all foreign-registered vehicles entering Malaysia through Bangunan Sultan Iskandar and Kompleks Sultan Abu Bakar, Johor, will commence from Oct 1 this year," the ministry said....
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Malaysian police step up security at places of worship, embassies after Sri Lanka blasts

Asia
KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysian police have stepped up security at embassies, consulates and places of worship across the country, following the deadly attacks at multiple churches and hotels in Sri Lanka last Sunday (Apr 21).“Royal Malaysia Police are always on the lookout to immediately act on anything unusual, and we pray that this country will not be hit by disaster (attack on places of worship)," acting deputy inspector-general of police Abdul Hamid Bador said on Thursday.Instructions have been issued for the police to increase its level of preparedness and be more sensitive to their surroundings, he said.The Easter Sunday attacks in Sri Lanka killed 359 people and wounded about 500.Near-simultaneous blasts tore through three luxury hotels popular with foreigners, and three churches packed with worshippers....
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Gangs taking control of Bangladesh Rohingya camps, report warns

Asia
DHAKA: Criminal gangs and militants are increasing their grip on Rohingya refugee camps in Bangladesh, committing killings and abductions with "impunity", International Crisis Group said in a new report Thursday (Apr 25).About 740,000 Rohingya fled Myanmar for Bangladesh after a military crackdown in August 2017, joining huge numbers already confined to the camps after earlier violence across the border.With no prospect in sight of the Rohingya returning to their homes in Myanmar, the international community must also now help Bangladesh to house the refugees for years ahead, ICG said.The conflict research group called for Bangladesh to toughen its police presence, saying that gangs and extremist groups were now operating openly in the camps....
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Sister of Sri Lanka attacks 'ringleader' Zahran Hashim condemns attacks

Asia
The sister of the alleged 'ringleader' behind the Sri Lanka bombings has spoken to the BBC's Yogita Limaye, saying she had lost contact with her brother. Zahran Hashim founded a mosque in the Kattankudy area of Sri Lanka but according to locals had not been living in the area for a number of years....
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Rohingya should move to island to avoid landslides: Bangladesh minister

Asia
DHAKA: Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh are at risk from landslides in the coming monsoon season and should be relocated to a remote island, the country's foreign minister said on Thursday (Apr 25), a move opposed by many refugees.Bangladesh wants to move 100,000 of the nearly 1 million Rohingya Muslims sheltered in cramped camps in its southeastern district of Cox's Bazar to the remote island, known as Bhasan Char, which it has been developing for the past two years."We have information that this year there may be more rain and that may cause landslides," Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen told reporters after he met with officials from the United Nations and the International Organization for Migration....
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Apple announces recall of some wall plug adapters over ‘electrical shock’ risk

Asia
SINGAPORE: US tech company Apple has announced a voluntary recall of its three-prong AC wall plug adapters designed for use primarily in Hong Kong, Singapore and the United Kingdom.The adapters can - in very rare cases - break and create a risk of electrical shock if exposed metal parts are touched, the company said in a statement on Thursday (Apr 25). Apple said that it is aware of six such incidents worldwide.The recall affects adapters shipped with Apple's Mac and certain iOS devices between 2003 and 2010, as well as those in the Apple World Travel Adapter Kit.An affected adapter is white, with no letters on the inside slot where it attaches to the main Apple power adapter, according to the company. The new adapters are white with grey on the inside portion....
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Philippines open for business with China, but stands firm on insisting Beijing respects its sovereignty: trade secretary

Asia
Speaking before the Belt and Road Forum, Ramon Lopez’s comments come after President Rodrigo Duterte threatened to deploy soldiers after Beijing allowed vessels to sail near a Philippine-claimed island in the South China Sea.
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Singapore’s NUS forced to overhaul handling of sexual harassment cases after backlash over Monica Baey’s peeping Tom incident

Asia
NUS will set up a unit to support sexual assault victims, among other measures, after a student was filmed in the shower. Education Minister Ong Ye Kung earlier described the penalty for the offender as ‘manifestly inadequate’.
DailyHum News
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Sri Lanka's defence secretary quits following suicide bomb attacks

Asia
COLOMBO: Sri Lankan Defence Secretary Hemasiri Fernando told Reuters on Thursday that he had resigned, taking responsibility for the suicide bomber attacks on the country last Sunday (Apr 21).He said that while there had been no failure on his own part, he was taking responsibility for failures of some institutions he headed as the secretary of defence.He said that security agencies were actively responding to intelligence they had about the possibility of attacks before they were launched."We were working on that. All those agencies were working on that," he said.The Easter Sunday bombings on churches and luxury hotels killed at least 359 people and wounded about 500. ...
DailyHum News
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Belt and Road must remain 'open' for free flow of trade, investments: Chan Chun Sing

Asia
BEIJING: Given the need to uphold the current rules-based trading system, China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) should continue to be an "open platform" that allows free flow of trade and investments, said Singapore’s Trade and Industry Minister Chan Chun Sing on Thursday (Apr 25).To do so, enhancements in areas, such as data connectivity, will be necessary. Mr Chan was speaking at a thematic forum on trade connectivity, held as part of the second Belt and Road Forum in Beijing."The BRI should continue to be an open platform through which trade and investments can flow freely and seamlessly," he said.After focusing on infrastructure connectivity over the last five years, the China-led infrastructure plan should be enhanced with the "softer" aspects of trade connectivity, such as data, talent, technology and finance....
DailyHum News
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Nepal marks quake anniversary as rebuilding continues

Asia
KATHMANDU: Nepal on Thursday (Apr 25) marked the fourth anniversary of a massive earthquake that killed almost 9,000 people and left millions homeless, some of whom are still living in temporary shelters.Nepal's prime minister KP Sharma Oli joined locals and civil servants at a memorial in the Kathmandu Durbar Square, a UNESCO world heritage site being rebuilt after it was badly damaged in the April 2015 quake."I would like to offer my condolences to those all who lost their lives," Oli said."We are here remembering the pain of that day ... and it is also important to examine how much work we have been able to do in the last four years to restore and rebuild what we lost."A minute's silence was observed around 11.56am - the time the 7.8-magnitude quake hit, triggering avalanches and landslides across the Himalayan nation and destroying schools and hospitals....
DailyHum News
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Scared Muslim refugees flee Sri Lankan homes over attack fears

Asia
COLOMBO: Hundreds of Muslim refugees in western Sri Lanka have taken refuge in mosques and a police station after facing intimidation following the deadly Easter bombings, activists said Thursday (Apr 25).At least 359 people died in Sunday's coordinated suicide blasts, including more than 100 Christians attending mass at St Sebastian's church in Negombo on the island's west coast.The attacks have been condemned by leaders of the country's Muslim minority, but the community has been left in fear of a backlash.Scores of Ahmadi Muslims who settled in Negombo after fleeing persecution in their home countries have been thrown out of their accommodation by landlords, according to officials."Today these refugees have become refugees again in Sri Lanka. They have been displaced for a second time," Ruki Fernando of Inform, a Sri Lankan human rights group, told reporters....
DailyHum News
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Don't interfere in Johor's Islamic affairs, says crown prince

Asia
JOHOR BAHRU: Johor Crown Prince Tunku Ismail Ibrahim said on Thursday (Apr 25) that those who have "nothing to do" with Johor should not interfere with the state's Islamic affairs.Speaking at an event held in conjunction with the official birthday of Johor Sultan Iskandar Ibrahim, the outspoken royal said that Johor is a sovereign state with its own constitution.“To those who have nothing to do with Johor, don’t meddle with Islamic religious affairs, which are state matters.“And don’t create problems among the people of Johor or confuse them, including the Johor royalty. In fact, Johor is always ready to share knowledge and work together to strengthen the community in the region,” he said....
DailyHum News
400400
Sri Lanka's crisis of leadership opens space for nationalist Rajapaksas

Asia
COLOMBO: Sri Lanka's former president Mahinda Rajapaksa and his brother, then the defence secretary, crushed Tamil Tiger separatists with such ferocity ten years ago that Western powers sought war crime trials against them and greeted their defeat in elections later with barely concealed glee.But now the tiny Indian Ocean island is faced with South Asia's deadliest militant attack - claimed by Islamic State - and may well again turn to the Rajapaksas for a strong-willed response to the new threat, politicians and diplomats say.Elections to pick a new president are due between October and December and Mahinda Rajapaksa is already targeting President Maithripala Sirisena and his Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe for failing to preserve the hard fought peace....
DailyHum News
400400
She's back: Chinese star Fan Bingbing re-emerges after tax scandal

Asia
SHANGHAI: Chinese superstar Fan Bingbing has reappeared in public following a year's absence from the spotlight, after authorities targetted her in a crackdown on tax evasion in the entertainment industry.The 37-year-old actress, model, singer and producer has been a ubiquitous household name in China for years and crossed over to Hollywood fame with a role in the 2014 blockbuster X-Men: Days of Future Past.But she disappeared from the public eye and her once prolific social media presence went silent last May after allegations emerged she had evaded taxes on a lucrative movie shoot - charges denied by her studio.Over the past year, she was not seen in public and only rarely appeared on social media....
DailyHum News
400400
Vietnam leader Nguyen Phu Trong suffering from illness: Sources

Asia
HANOI: Vietnamese leader Nguyen Phu Trong, the architect of the Southeast Asian country's anti-corruption drive, has been suffering from an unspecified illness, four diplomatic sources have told Reuters.Trong was admitted to the 108 Military Central Hospital in Hanoi, the diplomatic sources said, requesting anonymity because of the sensitivity of the issue in the communist-ruled country.In the first official comments on the 75-year-old Vietnamese leader's health since his last public appearance 11 days ago, foreign ministry spokeswoman Le Thi Thu Hang said on Thursday (Apr 24) that Trong's health had been affected by a "heavy workload" and "changeable weather conditions".Hang did not say how serious Trong's condition was, but added that he would "resume his normal duties soon", without elaborating. ...
DailyHum News
400400
Sri Lanka attacks: Who were the bombers?

Asia
Two of the nine bombers in Sri Lanka were the sons of a wealthy and well-known spice trader, local police sources have told the BBC.All but one of the nine have been identified and most came from "middle or upper middle class" families.UK officials have told the BBC they think it is highly likely that the Islamic State group (IS) was linked to the bombings - but it remains unclear whether it inspired, planned or directed the attacks. Some 32 Sri Lankan nationals are known to have joined IS in Iraq and Syria.As the sweeping investigation into the Easter Sunday bombings - which hit churches and hotels, killing 359 people - continues, here is what we know about the suspects.Two of the bombers were the sons of spice trader Mohammad Yusuf Ibrahim who is based in the Sri Lankan capital, Colombo....
DailyHum News
400400
Japan creates first artificial crater on asteroid

Asia
TOKYO: Japanese scientists have succeeded in creating what they called the first-ever artificial crater on an asteroid, a step towards shedding light on how the solar system evolved, the country's space agency said Thursday (Apr 25).The announcement comes after the Hayabusa2 probe fired an explosive device at the Ryugu asteroid early this month to blast a crater in the surface and scoop up material, aiming to reveal more about the origins of life on Earth.Yuichi Tsuda, Hayabusa2 project manager at the Japanese space agency (JAXA), told reporters they confirmed the crater from images captured by the probe located 1,700m from the asteroid's surface."Creating an artificial crater with an impactor and observing it in detail afterwards is a world-first attempt," Tsuda said....
DailyHum News
400400
Singapore-based Malaysian doctor safely rescued after going missing on Nepal mountain

Asia
SINGAPORE: A Malaysian climber stranded near the summit of Nepal's Mount Annapurna has been found by rescuers and is in a safe condition, Malaysia's Ministry of Foreign Affairs said on Thursday afternoon (Apr 25).  Dr Chin Wui Kin, who is a visiting senior anaesthesiology consultant at Singapore's Ng Teng Fong General Hospital, was separated from other trekkers while descending the treacherous peak. In a media statement at around 6pm on Thursday, the ministry said rescuers were in the process of bringing Dr Chin down from the mountain so that he could receive medical care. In Facebook posts on Thursday afternoon, expedition organisers Seven Summit Treks said it has marked Dr Chin's location on the area C3 of the mountain, and deployed four sherpas to rescue him. ...
DailyHum News
400400
'Let's discuss in a matured way': Johor sultan tells Putrajaya amid row

Asia
KUALA LUMPUR: Johor Sultan Ibrahim Iskandar on Thursday (Apr 25) called for Putrajaya and the southern state to set aside their differences and have a mature discussion, a day after Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad reiterated that the royals should not interfere with the appointment of state chief ministers.In an immediate response, Home Minister Muhyiddin Yassin, who is also Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia's (PPBM) president, said the palace must admit its mistakes and stop meddling with state affairs.In the latest of a series of exchanges between the Johor royals and Dr Mahathir over the recent change in state minister, the sultan said in a Facebook post that all parties should set aside their differences when disputes or misunderstandings arise....
DailyHum News
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Elevator collapses, killing 11 at China work site

Asia
BEIJING: An elevator collapsed at a construction site in northern China on Thursday (Apr 25), killing 11 workers, state media said.Two others were also seriously injured in the accident in Hengshui city, Hebei province, local authorities said on their official Weibo account.The accident occurred on a site where a residential project is under construction.The municipal authorities added that the injured were being treated in hospital and that an investigation into the cause of the accident is underway, but provided no further details.The official Xinhua news agency said an elevator had collapsed.Deadly industrial accidents are common in China, where safety regulations are often poorly enforced....
DailyHum News
400400
Sri Lanka attacks: Sister of 'ringleader' deplores attack

Asia
A young mother of two in the coastal Sri Lankan town of Kattankudy sits in disbelief. Mohammad Hashim Madaniya has found out that her brother, Zahran Hashim, is the alleged ringleader of a group of suicide bombers who attacked churches and hotels in Sri Lanka on Easter Sunday, killing more than 350 people.She says she is horrified by what he has done and fears what could happen next. She has been interviewed by police but is not being treated as a suspect.It's still not clear if Mr Hashim, who is accused of leading a group of bombers (alleged to include two sons of a wealthy tycoon), is alive or dead.Wearing a white scarf, Ms Madaniya sits uncomfortably in the humidity of Kattankudy, a predominantly Muslim town overlooking the Indian Ocean. ...
DailyHum News
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China seeks to allay fears over Belt and Road debt risks

Asia
BEIJING: China aims to make the Belt and Road initiative sustainable and prevent debt risks, its finance minister said on Thursday (Apr 25), seeking to allay criticism that the infrastructure plan to boost trade and investment creates a heavy burden for some nations.The policy championed by Chinese President Xi Jinping has become mired in controversy, with some partner nations bemoaning the high cost of projects, though China has repeatedly said it is not seeking to trap anyone with debt.Western governments have tended to view it as a means to spread Chinese influence abroad, saddling poor countries with unsustainable debt.Finance minister Liu Kun, speaking at a forum to kick off a three-day Belt and Road summit in Beijing, said China will establish an analysis framework on debt sustainability for Belt and Road projects to "prevent and resolve debt risks"....
DailyHum News
400400
North Korea summit: Putin and Kim toast in Vladivostok

Asia
North Korea's Kim Jong-un and Russia's Vladimir Putin sat down to a lavish dinner following talks in the Russian far-eastern city of Vladivostok.The two have pledged to boost ties at their first ever summit....
DailyHum News
400400
Second Singaporean man charged in Pasir Gudang chemical dumping

Asia
JOHOR BAHRU: The Singaporean company director who surrendered to police in connection with last month’s chemical pollution in Sungai Kim Kim was charged on Thursday (Apr 25).Illegal dumping of chemicals into the river in Johor led to more than 2,700 people being taken ill and 111 schools in Pasir Gudang to temporarily close.On Wednesday, Sim Wei Der, 50, turned himself in at the Seri Alam district police headquarters at 11.17am and was detained in the police lockup, according to Johor police deputy chief Mohd Kamaruddin Md Din.Sim pleaded not guilty after he was charged on Thursday with abetting three others to dispose chemical waste into the river. Three people, including Singaporean Wang Jing Chao, 34, director of a used tyre-processing company, have pleaded not guilty in relation to the case.  ...
DailyHum News
400400
Location pinpointed for Singapore-based doctor stranded on Nepal mountain

Asia
SINGAPORE: Efforts to rescue a Malaysian climber stranded near the summit of Nepal's Mount Annapurna are ongoing and his location has been pinpointed, expedition organisers Seven Summit Treks said on Thursday (Apr 25).  Dr Chin Wui Kin, who is a visiting senior anaesthesiology consultant at Singapore's Ng Teng Fong General Hospital, was separated from other trekkers while descending the treacherous peak. In Facebook posts on Thursday afternoon, Seven Summit Treks said it has marked Dr Chin's location on the area C3 of the mountain, and deployed four sherpas to rescue him. The sherpas, pictured abseiling from a helicopter, are part of Nepal's mountain search and rescue team. At around 2.40pm (Singapore time), Seven Summit Treks said the rescue team has been dropped, adding that it would take them "some hours" to reach Dr Chin's location. ...
DailyHum News
400400
PM Lee to attend Belt and Road Forum in Beijing, witness signing of MOUs with China

Asia
SINGAPORE: Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong will visit Beijing from Thursday (Apr 25) for five days to attend the second Belt and Road Forum and witness the signing of memorandums of understanding on bilateral cooperation between Singapore and China. Mr Lee's visit to the Chinese capital is at the invitation of China’s President Xi Jinping, a statement from the Prime Minister's Office said. The forum - centred upon China’s Belt and Road Initiative which aims to rebuild the old Silk Road to connect China with Asia, Europe and beyond with massive infrastructure spending - kicks off on Friday.China will play host to nearly 40 foreign leaders, including Mr Lee, Russian President Vladimir Putin, Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz and Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad. ...
DailyHum News
400400
Amnesty says Hong Kong office hit by China-linked cyberattack

Asia
HONG KONG: Amnesty International's Hong Kong office has been hit by a years-long cyberattack from hackers with known links to the Chinese government, the rights group said Thursday (Apr 25).The attack comes at a time of growing concern in Hong Kong over shrinking freedoms as Beijing flexes its muscles and western nations fret about the global dominance of China in telecommunications networks.Amnesty said it first detected its systems had been compromised on Mar 15 when its Hong Kong office migrated its IT infrastructure to the rights group's more secure international network as part of a scheduled upgrade.The group brought in a team of experts to investigate."Cyber forensic experts were able to establish links between the infrastructure used in this attack and previously reported APT campaigns associated with the Chinese government," the group said in a statement....
DailyHum News
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Australia's Daily Telegraph prints rival's pages by mistake

Asia
One of Australia's most popular tabloids has blamed a printing error after pages from a rival newspaper appeared in its Thursday edition.The Sydney-based Daily Telegraph, a right-leaning tabloid owned by Rupert Murdoch, accidentally printed two pages of the liberal Sydney Morning Herald.The pages include a letter calling for action to tackle climate change.The Telegraph has apologised for the mistake and said it happened during the production process."Both papers share the same printing facility in Sydney's west," it said in a statement posted to Twitter. "We apologise for any confusion this has caused."The mistake was spotted by a number of readers who were quick to see the funny side."No need to apologise," wrote Sydney Morning Herald journalist Kate McClymont. "Having some [Herald] pages is a reader bonus."...
DailyHum News
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Facebook leads Myanmar police to weed-growing Americans

Asia
YANGON: Myanmar police have arrested one American and two locals after photos on Facebook led them to a huge plantation of towering marijuana plants near Mandalay.Pictures of the fields of weed started circulating on the platform last week - a rare sight online in a country where police photos of seized heroin and methamphetamine are far more common.Police raided the 20-acre site in Ngunzun township Monday (Apr 22) to find nearly 350,000 marijuana plants - some up to two metres tall - 380kg of seeds and 270kg of marijuana, the Central Committee for Drug Abuse Control (CCDAC) announced Wednesday.A released photo showed arrested US citizen John Fredric Todoroki, 63, standing alongside Myanmar nationals Shein Latt, 37, and Ma Shun Le Myat Noe, 23....
DailyHum News
400400
Late Sandakan MP's daughter DAP candidate for by-election

Asia
SANDAKAN, Sabah: Vivian Wong Shir Yee, the daughter of the late Sandakan Member of Parliament Stephen Wong Tien Fatt, has been named as the Democratic Action Party (DAP) candidate for the Sandakan by-election.The announcement was made by Sabah Chief Minister Mohd Shafie Apdal on Thursday (Apr 25).Wong, 30, said she would continue with her father’s struggle to develop Sandakan’s economy.“Like my late father, I will always go to the ground to understand the people’s problems regardless of race.“I am confident that with the cooperation of the new government, Sandakan can be developed comprehensively, and I will make Sandakan a dynamic area,” she said after the announcement on her candidacy. ...
DailyHum News
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A Banksy rat? Tokyo city displays work 'by famous artist'

Asia
TOKYO: Tokyo on Thursday (Apr 25) displayed a drawing thought to be the work of Banksy, as the city's mayor urged the famous and mysterious street artist to get in touch.Curious Tokyoites, tourists and art lovers flocked to see the work depicting a rat holding an umbrella that was spotted on a panel near a monorail station in central Tokyo.As ever, doubts rage over whether it is a genuine work by the secretive artist and Governor Yuriko Koike said: "If there are any problems, I'd very much like Mr Banksy to contact the Tokyo metropolitan government."It is unclear exactly when the drawing - which Koike described as a "cute rat" - was painted but the city's public safety bureau has known about the graffiti for a long time, seemingly oblivious to its potential....
DailyHum News
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All Sri Lanka Catholic church services suspended: Senior priest

Asia
COLOMBO: All of Sri Lanka's Catholic churches have been ordered to stay closed and suspend services until security improves after deadly Easter bombings, a senior priest said on Thursday (Apr 25)."On the advice of the security forces we are keeping all churches closed," the priest said. "There will be no public mass said until further notice."The move to suspend church services comes at a time of high tension in Sri Lanka following the Easter Sunday suicide bomber attacks on the island state that killed 359 people and wounded about 500. The attacks targeted luxury hotels in the capital of Colombo and churches, where Christians were attending Easter services. The Islamic State militant group claimed responsibility. ...
DailyHum News
400400
North Korea’s Kim Jong-un and Russia’s Vladimir Putin seek closer ties at first-ever summit

Asia
The meeting in Vladivostok is Kim’s first face-to-face talks with another head of state since returning from February’s failed summit with US President Donald Trump in Hanoi.
DailyHum News
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Belt and Road: China pushes Belt and Road to world leaders

Asia
World leaders are gathering in Beijing from Thursday for a summit on China's Belt and Road initiative amid growing criticism of the project.The sweeping infrastructure project aims to expand global trade links.The initiative has funded trains, roads, and ports in many countries, but has left some saddled with debt.Some see it a bold bid for geopolitical influence, with the US particularly critical of China's so-called "debt diplomacy".At the first day of the forum in Beijing, Chinese Finance Minister Liu Kun said China aims to make the Belt and Road initiative sustainable and to prevent debt risks. Leaders from 37 countries and dozens of officials are due to attend the three-day summit, including Russian President Vladimir Putin and Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte. ...
DailyHum News
400400
Moscow and Pyongyang, a timeline of relations

Asia
VLADIVOSTOK, Russia: North Korea's close relationship with the Soviet Union cooled in the 1990s under a new Russian power, but were revived in the 2000s as Moscow sought support amid a new standoff with the West.As Kim Jong Un meets President Vladimir Putin for the first time, here is a broad overview.COLD WAR ALLIESAt the end of World War II, the Soviet Union was given trusteeship of the northern half of the Korean peninsula, the United States having the same for the south.Moscow installed Kim Il Sung - who had led a Korean contingent in the Soviet army - as leader and he established the communist North Korean state in 1948. Two years later, with the backing of China and the Soviet Union, Kim's forces invaded the South, triggering a war that claimed four million lives before a 1953 armistice....
DailyHum News
400400
Blast in town east of Sri Lankan capital, no casualties

Asia
COLOMBO: An explosion occurred in a town 40km east of the Sri Lankan capital, Colombo, on Thursday (Apr 25) but there were no casualties, a police spokesman said.Spokesman Ruwan Gunasekera said police were investigating the blast on empty land behind the magistrate's court in Pugoda."There was an explosion behind the court, we are investigating," he said, adding it was not a controlled explosion like other blasts in recent days.The blast came at a time of high tension in Sri Lanka following the Easter Sunday suicide bomber attacks on the island state that killed 359 people and wounded about 500.The attacks targeted luxury hotels in the capital of Colombo and churches, where Christians were attending Easter services. The Islamic State militant group claimed responsibility....

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