• Hawaii begins new preparations for a N Korean missile attack

    Hawaii begins new preparations for a N Korean missile attack

    Hawaii is beginning an education campaign to prepare islanders for what to do in the event of a North Korean missile attack. Tourism boosters say the threat is too improbable to justify a plan that could scare away travellers, but the Hawaii Emergency Management Agency believes preparations cannot wait any longer. “We do not want [...]

    24-Jul-2017 Intellasia | CNBC | 6:00 AM
  • UN envoy urges China stop repatriating N Korea refugees

    UN envoy urges China stop repatriating N Korea refugees

    The UN’s human rights envoy to North Korea on Friday urged China to stop repatriating escaped defectors to the North, where they face harsh punishment, torture or execution. Tomas Ojea Quintana, the UN’s Special Rapporteur on human rights in North Korea, said he was “alarmed by a surge in detentions and forced repatriations of North [...]

    24-Jul-2017 Intellasia | AFP | 6:00 AM
  • US State Department to clamp ban on travel to N Korea

    US State Department to clamp ban on travel to N Korea

    The US government on Friday said it will bar Americans from travelling to North Korea due to the risk of “long-term detention” in the country, where a US student was jailed while on a tour last year and later died. US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has authorised a “Geographical Travel Restriction” on Americans to [...]

    24-Jul-2017 Intellasia | Reuters | 6:00 AM
  • ExclusiveUS presses Burma to cease military ties with N Korea

    ExclusiveUS presses Burma to cease military ties with N Korea

    Myanmar’s military has maintained ties with North Korea, even though the civilian-led government denies any cooperation, and the Trump administration is pressing for a complete break-off of remaining links, current and former US officials said. Washington made its case to Myanmar’s de facto leader, Nobel Peace Prize laureate Aung San Suu Kyi and the army [...]

    24-Jul-2017 Intellasia | Reuters | 6:00 AM
  • Blast in eastern China kills 2, dozens injured

    Blast in eastern China kills 2, dozens injured

    A liquefied petroleum gas canister explosion tore through three restaurants in the eastern China city of Hangzhou on Friday, killing two people and injuring 55, state media reported. The explosion occurred Friday morning and images posted on Chinese media shortly afterward showed bloodied victims nursing their injuries as a fire raged through the two-storey structure [...]

    24-Jul-2017 Intellasia | AFP | 6:00 AM
  • Philippine MPs to vote on Duterte bid for longer martial rule

    Philippine MPs to vote on Duterte bid for longer martial rule

    The Philippine Congress sits in a special session Saturday to vote on President Rodrigo Duterte’s bid for longer military rule over the southern third of the country in a bid to defeat Islamist gunmen. Duterte is widely expected to win approval for martial law in the region until the end of the year, with troops [...]

    24-Jul-2017 Intellasia | AFP | 6:00 AM
  • Thai court to deliver Yingluck verdict next month

    Thai court to deliver Yingluck verdict next month

    A Thai court will deliver its ruling in the criminal negligence case of toppled premier Yingluck Shinawatra on August 25, a verdict that could see her jailed for up to 10 years. She is accused of failing to stop corruption in a rice subsidy policy that funnelled cash to her poor farming base but cost [...]

    24-Jul-2017 Intellasia | AFP | 6:00 AM
  • Asean Politicians Demand Release of Burma Journalists

    Asean Politicians Demand Release of Burma Journalists

    Southeast Asian politicians called for the immediate release on Wednesday of three journalists arrested last month in Shan State and the cessation of laws in Myanmar used to curb media freedom. Asean Parliamentarians for Human Rights (APHR) released a statement rebuking the detention of The Irrawaddy’s senior reporter Lawi Weng (U Thein Zaw), and Democratic [...]

    24-Jul-2017 Intellasia | Irrawaddy | 6:00 AM
  • Burma still using ‘same tactics’ of oppression as junta: UN envoy

    Burma still using ‘same tactics’ of oppression as junta: UN envoy

    Myanmar is still using the same “tactics” to silence its people as the former junta, the UN’s rights envoy said Friday, urging the government to allow the UN to probe allegations of ethnic cleansing of Rohingya Muslims. More than 70,000 Rohingya have fled to Bangladesh since October to ecape a bloody crackdown by security forces, [...]

    24-Jul-2017 Intellasia | AFP | 6:00 AM
  • Philippines’ Duterte says he’ll never visit ‘lousy’ America

    Philippines’ Duterte says he’ll never visit ‘lousy’ America

    Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte on Friday vowed that he would never visit “lousy” America despite an earlier invitation extended by US President Donald Trump. Duterte made the declaration as he expressed anger at a US Congress human rights commission hearing where various advocate groups assailed his bloody war on drugs. “There will never be a [...]

    24-Jul-2017 Intellasia | AFP | 6:00 AM
  • Top China diplomat Wang Yi to visit Philippines  Rappler

    Top China diplomat Wang Yi to visit Philippines Rappler

    Chinese Foreign minister Wang Yi will make a rare trip to the Philippines next week, the Philippine Department of Foreign Affairs announced Friday, July 21. In a media advisory, the DFA said Wang will join a bilateral meeting, a signing ceremony, and a news conference at the Shangri-La at The Fort hotel in Taguig City [...]

    24-Jul-2017 Intellasia | Rappler | 6:00 AM
  • Why Japan’s first lady was probably not snubbing President Trump at the G-20 dinner

    Why Japan’s first lady was probably not snubbing President Trump at the G-20 dinner

    President Trump’s exclusive interview with the New York Times on Wednesday touched on plenty of weighty topics, including the Republicans’ unsuccessful attempts to pass a health-care bill and what would constitute a “red line” in the Russia investigation led by special counsel Robert Mueller. But one excerpt in particular set afire a corner of the [...]

    24-Jul-2017 Intellasia | Washington Post | 6:00 AM

Society

Vietnam pollution fight hits supplier to global fashion brands

Vietnamese villagers blockading a textile plant that serves global fashion brands are seeking the permanent closure of the factory due to pollution concerns, highlighting a growing readiness in Vietnam to campaign over environmental issues. Hundreds of people from Hai Duong, 50 km (30 miles) east of Hanoi, have kept watch in shifts day and night [...]

Vietnam to rescue 1,000 bears in bid to end bile trade

Vietnam agreed Wednesday to rescue more than 1,000 bears from illegal farms across the country, in a move to end the traditional medicine trade in the creatures’ bile. Though bile farms are already outlawed in Vietnam, bears are still captured and caged in illicit facilities where their bile is extracted using invasive and painful techniques. [...]

Study finds caste-based diseases in South Asia

Most South Asian linguistic races and caste groups have a high vulnerability for ‘population-specific’ diseases. A CCMB study published in Nature Genetics on Monday found that out of 263 unique South Asian groups studied, around 81 have a large number of recessive diseases. A recessive disease is one that can be passed down through families. [...]

Health

Study finds caste-based diseases in South Asia

Most South Asian linguistic races and caste groups have a high vulnerability for ‘population-specific’ diseases. A CCMB study published in Nature Genetics on Monday found that out of 263 unique South Asian groups studied, around 81 have a large number of recessive diseases. A recessive disease is one that can be passed down through families. [...]

In South Asian Social Castes, a Living Lab for Genetic Disease

In certain states in southern India, anesthesiologists know to ask anyone undergoing surgery whether they belong to the Vysya, a regional group traditionally associated with traders and businesspeople. Anecdotally, medical workers know that some people with Vysya ancestry who live primarily in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana have had fatal responses to common muscle relaxants, so [...]

HK leader Carrie Lam calls for measures to cope with deadly flu outbreak

Hong Kong’s Chief Executive Carrie Lam has called on local health authorities to take urgent measures to cope with a deadly flu outbreakone of the city’s worst in recent history. According to the South China Morning Post, 157 people have died so far since the outbreak started in May. The worst such flu outbreak was [...]

FinanceAsia

QNB Group Commences Operations in India

QNB Group Commences Operations in India

DOHA, Qatar–(BUSINESS WIRE)–QNB Group, the largest financial institution in the Middle East and Africa, has recently commenced operations in the city of Mumbai, the economic capital of the Republic of India. The start of the Group’s operations in the Republic of India comes in support of its vision to become a leading bank in the [...]

Asian shares meander as ECB, BOJ hold monetary policy steady

Asian shares were mixed Friday in muted trading after the European Central Bank announced no changes to its stimulus policies. KEEPING SCORE: Japan’s benchmark Nikkei 225 slipped 0.2 percent to 20,109.57 while Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 lost 0.2 percent to 5,750.70. South Korea’s Kospi rose 0.2 percent to 2,446.86. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng lost 0.2 percent [...]

Asia stocks hit near-decade high, yen slips as BOJ cuts inflation forecast

Asian shares rose to their highest levels in nearly a decade on Thursday, bolstered by a surge in global markets, while the yen eased after the Bank of Japan reinforced expectations that it will keep massive stimulus in place far longer than other major central banks. European markets were also set for a positive start, [...]

Regional

Burma still using ‘same tactics’ of oppression as junta: UN envoy

Burma still using ‘same tactics’ of oppression as junta: UN envoy

Myanmar is still using the same “tactics” to silence its people as the former junta, the UN’s rights envoy said Friday, urging the government to allow the UN to probe allegations of ethnic cleansing of Rohingya Muslims. More than 70,000 Rohingya have fled to Bangladesh since October to ecape a bloody crackdown by security forces, [...]

More attacks likely in Southeast Asia after Marawireport

As a lengthy, urban battle drags on between Philippine forces and Islamist militants in the southern city of Marawi, a new report by a think-tank has warned of more attacks by radicals in Southeast Asia, including on foreigners. A coalition of Philippine militant groups, augmented by foreign fighters, stormed Marawi, on the island on Mindanao, [...]

Total in Talks with Burma to Build Power Plant, Supply LNG

Total SA is in talks with Myanmar to supply the country’s most populous city, Yangon, with liquefied natural gas. The French energy giant may also build a power plant, according to Xavier Preel, general manager of Total E&P Myanmar. Total, which sold about 11 million tonnes of LNG last year, is seeking to expand its [...]

China

China clamps down on holes in ‘Great Firewall’

As part of a crackdown on Web surfers who evade censorship, China is tightening control over foreign companies’ Internet use a move that some worry might disrupt their operations or jeopardise trade secrets. In a letter to corporate customers, the biggest Chinese Internet service provider says virtual private networks, which create encrypted links between computers [...]

Bieber not welcome thanks to ‘bad behaviour’: Beijing authorities

Justin Bieber is not welcome to perform in China because of his “bad behaviour”, Beijing authorities have said, after the pop idol angered many Chinese in 2014 by visiting a controversial Japanese war shrine The Beijing Municipal Bureau of Culture revealed it was not a “Belieber” when it said the 23-year-old Canadian, who last played [...]

The death of Liu Xiaobo marks dark times for dissent in China

It has been a week since the death of Liu Xiaobo, the famed Chinese dissident who was awarded the 2010 Nobel Prize for Peace while imprisoned. Late last month, Chinese officials announced that the prominent writer, who had been detained since 2009, was being moved to a hospital to receive treatment for late-stage liver cancer. [...]

Malaysia

Malaysian who stole renovation tools from new flats jailed 4 years

Over three years, he entered Singapore from Malaysia with a sole purpose in mind: to steal construction equipment left behind by contractors in flats that were under construction. Khee Kim Choon, a 48-year-old Malaysian renovation contractor, sold some of the stolen tools including hand drills, electric cutters, battery sets and handsaws and used the remainder [...]

Malaysia’s Petronas delivers first LNG cargo to Thailand’s PTT

Malaysian state oil firm Petroliam Nasional Bhd announced on Friday the delivery of its first liquefied natural gas (LNG) cargo to Thailand. Petronas, as the company is known, is committed to deliver up to 1.2 million tonnes per annum of LNG to Thailand’s state-owned PTT Pcl for a period of 15 years. The cargo was [...]

Malaysia’s c.bank reserves up at $99.1 billion as of July 14

Malaysia’s gross international reserves rose to $99.1 billion as of July 14, from $98.9 billion on June 30, the central bank said on Friday. Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) said reserves were sufficient to finance 7.9 months of retained imports and were 1.1 times the short-term external debt. The central bank released the following international reserves [...]

Indonesia

Freeport Indonesia mine workers extend strike for fourth month

An estimated 5,000 workers at the giant Grasberg copper mine operated by Freeport-McMoRan Inc’s (FCX.N) Indonesian unit will extend their strike for a fourth month, a union official said on Friday, in an ongoing dispute over layoffs and employment terms. The escalating labour issue comes as Freeport, the world’s largest publicly traded copper miner, is [...]

Indonesia Struggles to Fire Up Its Economy

Indonesia is at an impasse with the central bank and the government running out of policy space to fire up the economy. After six interest rate cuts last year, gross domestic product is growing at about 5 percenta respectable pace, but not enough to generate the additional revenue that President Joko Widodo needs for his [...]

Analysts Puzzled by Indonesia Central Bank’s Midnight Decision

Bank Indonesia blamed a swearing-in ceremony at the nation’s financial regulator for the delay of its interest-rate announcement to close to midnight in Jakarta on Thursday. The timing of the decision left analysts puzzled and spurred speculation the central bank might have been waiting for European Central Bank President Mario Draghi’s monetary policy press conference [...]

Singapore

Singaporean reported missing in China located after a week

A Singaporean man who was said to be missing overseas for a week has made contact with his family, according to a Facebook post by his wife. In a Facebook message to Yahoo News Singapore, Barbara Tan said, “Kay contacted me this morning at 9.10am on a borrowed phone and the first thing he said [...]

Retiree jailed eight years for performing oral sex on boy in Tampines

A Singaporean retiree who was tried for performing oral sex on a 12-year-old boy has been found guilty and sentenced to eight years’ jail after a four-day trial. Chua Hock Leong, 63, was on Friday (21 July) convicted of one charge of committing sexual assault on the boy, who cannot be named due to a [...]

The more successful Singapore is, the harder it is to attract political talent: Chan Chun Sing

Since entering politics in 2011, he was promoted to a full minister in 2013, helming the Social and Family Development Ministry, with his rise being among the swiftest among those who entered politics in the landmark 2011 hustings. Even before his political career, Chan was a high flier in government, rising through the ranks in [...]

Thailand

‘Darknet’ suspect’s flashy cars raised eyebrows in Thailand

The neighbours had their suspicions. The young Canadian accused of masterminding the world’s leading “darknet” internet marketplace lived a seemingly quiet life for more than a year with his Thai girlfriend in a middle-class neighbourhood on the outskirts of Bangkok. But the flashy cars he drove stood out. There was the nearly $1 million, metallic [...]

Thai court to deliver Yingluck verdict next month

Thai court to deliver Yingluck verdict next month

A Thai court will deliver its ruling in the criminal negligence case of toppled premier Yingluck Shinawatra on August 25, a verdict that could see her jailed for up to 10 years. She is accused of failing to stop corruption in a rice subsidy policy that funnelled cash to her poor farming base but cost [...]

Thailand monks: Wirapol Sukphol case highlights country’s Buddhism crisis

It was a jarring image; a group of Buddhist monks, with shaven heads and orange robes, sitting back in the soft-leather seats of an executive jet, passing luxury accessories among themselves. The video of the monk, now known by his pre-monk name, Wirapol Sukphol, went viral after being posted on YouTube in 2013. A subsequent [...]

Philippines

Top China diplomat Wang Yi to visit Philippines  Rappler

Top China diplomat Wang Yi to visit Philippines Rappler

Chinese Foreign minister Wang Yi will make a rare trip to the Philippines next week, the Philippine Department of Foreign Affairs announced Friday, July 21. In a media advisory, the DFA said Wang will join a bilateral meeting, a signing ceremony, and a news conference at the Shangri-La at The Fort hotel in Taguig City [...]

Philippine MPs to vote on Duterte bid for longer martial rule

Philippine MPs to vote on Duterte bid for longer martial rule

The Philippine Congress sits in a special session Saturday to vote on President Rodrigo Duterte’s bid for longer military rule over the southern third of the country in a bid to defeat Islamist gunmen. Duterte is widely expected to win approval for martial law in the region until the end of the year, with troops [...]

Philippines’ Duterte says he’ll never visit ‘lousy’ America

Philippines’ Duterte says he’ll never visit ‘lousy’ America

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte on Friday vowed that he would never visit “lousy” America despite an earlier invitation extended by US President Donald Trump. Duterte made the declaration as he expressed anger at a US Congress human rights commission hearing where various advocate groups assailed his bloody war on drugs. “There will never be a [...]

Japan

Legendary WWII US Sub Attacked Japanese Coast

Submarines still made use of deck guns during World War II, most of them ranging between three and five inches in caliber. These were used to finish off unarmed merchant ships or sink smaller vessels that could evade torpedoesbut also were occasionally directed to bombard coastal targets, such as in early-war Japanese raids on the [...]

Tokyo Olympic stadium worker’s suicide due to overwork: family

The suicide of a 23-year-old worker on Tokyo’s Olympic stadium was due to overwork, his family said, as Japan races to finish building venues for the 2020 Games. The construction firm employee, who began working on the project in December, clocked 200 hours of overtime in the month before his body was found in April, [...]

British foreign secretary supports Japan to stop N. Korea

British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson said Friday his country stands “shoulder to shoulder” with Japan in efforts to put an end to North Korea’s nuclear and missile tests. “We all need to increase the pressure on Pyongyang through diplomacy and sanctions, and that must include China using its influence to bring North Korea back to [...]

Korea

Hawaii prepares for ‘unlikely’ N Korea missile threat

Hawaii is the first state to prepare the public for the possibility of a ballistic missile strike from North Korea. The state’s Emergency Management Agency on Friday announced a public education campaign about what to do. Hawaii lawmakers have been urging emergency management officials to update Cold War-era plans for coping with a nuclear attack [...]

CIA chief signals desire for regime change in N Korea

CIA director Mike Pompeo on Thursday evening offered some of the most aggressive comments yet from the Trump administration with regard to North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un. Although Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has in the past said the US was against forcing Kim out of power or the collapse of his government, Pompeo [...]

Korea Officially Legalises Bitcoin, Huge Market For Traders

South Korea has officially legalised international Bitcoin transfers and is on the verge of providing a regulatory framework for Bitcoin trading platforms and exchanges. On July 3, Representative Park Yong-jin of the ruling Democratic Party of Korea revealed that the South Korean government is ready to regulate the Bitcoin market. According to Rep. Park, he [...]

Hong Kong

HK is showing promise as a destination for tech IPOs

The US tech IPO window may have reopened in 2017 following a lull last year, but the outlook is also looking rosier for another listing platform located on the other side of world. The Hong Kong Stock Exchange (HKSE) is experiencing a renaissance of sorts among the tech industry. Selfie app company Meitu held the [...]

HK and Taiwan police bust love scam syndicate in joint operation

Fraudsters duped 127 Taiwanese women out of HK$77 million which was sent to bank accounts in the city; eight Hongkongers were arrested Police from Hong Kong and Taiwan have busted a syndicate running online romance scams which duped Taiwanese women out of over HK$77 million, according to Taiwan’s official news agency. The racket, based in [...]

HK pro-government lawmakers ‘taking advantage’ by moving to restrict filibustering

Plan revealed to change legislature rules after summer recess as pan-democrats drag out discussion for seven hours at Finance Committee meeting Pro-government lawmakers will propose changing the procedural rules of the Legislative Council after the summer recess to restrict filibustering, in a move slammed by their rivals as “taking advantage”. Their plan was revealed a [...]

Taiwan

China forbids terms ‘Formosa’ and ‘Republic of China’

China bans use of ‘Formosa’ and ‘Republic of China’ in media, instead encourages use of ‘Taiwan area’ China’s state-run Xinhua News Agency released a list of “forbidden words” related to Taiwan, Macau and Hong Kong, which bans the terms “Formosa” and “Republic of China” from being used in news reports, while also throwing a small [...]

2 Chinese bombers flew over Taiwanese airspace: Taiwan

Two Chinese H-6K bombers have flown over Taiwan’s Air Defense Identification Zone east of the island under the close vigil of the latter’s combat aircrafts, the Taiwanese Defense Ministry said. Taiwanese fighter jets closely monitored the movements of the Chinese planes and never posed a threat to national security, the ministry said in a statement [...]

US makes final finding rebar exports from Taiwan dumped

The US Commerce Department said on Friday it had made a final finding that exports of steel concrete reinforcing bar (rebar) from Taiwan were dumped. The US International Trade Commission will announce in August whether Taiwan’s rebar exports hurt US producers, which would prompt an order to keep anti-dumping duties in place. In a statement [...]

Vietnam

Reference exchange rate down 1 VND

The State Bank of Vietnam cut the daily reference exchange rate for VND/USD by 1 VND on July 21 to 22,432 VND per USD. With the current trading band of +/-3 percent, the ceiling rate applied to commercial banks during the day is 23,105 VND and the floor rate 21,759 VND. The opening hour rates [...]

Small agri production must end

Vietnam’s agriculture sector needs to end the practice of small-scale production and reorganise it on a larger scale towards high-tech agriculture, the “Reorganising Agricultural Production” seminar, held prior to the second Vietnam Private Sector Forum (VPSF) at the end of this month, heard. Tran Manh Bao, Chair of VPSF’s Agriculture Working Group and the Thai [...]

Petrol prices increased by over 300 VND per litre

The ministries of industry and trade and finance decided to raise retail petrol prices as of 3 p.m on July 20. The retail price of RON 92 increased by 357 VND to trade at a maximum of 16,426 VND (0.72 USD) per litre. The price of E5 bio-fuel rose by 333 VND to trade at [...]