• Hundreds feared drowned in ferry disaster

    Hundreds feared drowned in ferry disaster

    Hopes had dimmed Wednesday that the nearly 300 missing passengers who were trapped aboard a sunken ferry had survived after divers spent hours searching the vessel and had yet to find anyone alive. “I’m afraid there’s little chance for those trapped inside still to be alive,” rescue official Cho Yang-Bok told YTN television. Survivors plucked [...]

    18-Apr-2014 Intellasia | Usa Today | 6:00 AM
  • At Least 108 Children Dead in Measles Flare-Up in Vietnam

    At Least 108 Children Dead in Measles Flare-Up in Vietnam

    At least 108 children have died of measles complications at hospitals in the Vietnamese capital this year, more than four times the number previously reported by the government, according to local media reports which said that the death toll from the highly contagious viral disease could be even higher. Tran Dac Phu, head of the [...]

    18-Apr-2014 Intellasia | RFA | 6:00 AM
  • Robot sub makes first complete search for plane

    Robot sub makes first complete search for plane

    A robotic submarine has completed its first full 16-hour mission scanning the floor of the Indian Ocean for wreckage of the missing Malaysian airliner after two previous missions were cut short by technical problems and deep water, authorities said on Thursday. The Bluefin 21 had covered 90 square kilometers (35 square miles) of the silt-covered [...]

    18-Apr-2014 Intellasia | AP | 6:00 AM
  • Oil results may reveal first proof of MH370

    Oil results may reveal first proof of MH370

    As the painstaking search for Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 enters its 39th day, it has been revealed that more than half of Malaysians believe their government is hiding information about it. A survey for Malaysia’s Business Standard found only 26 per cent believed the government was being truthful on the disappearance of the Boeing 777. [...]

    18-Apr-2014 Intellasia | The West Australian | 6:00 AM
  • India struggles with rebel threats during election

    India struggles with rebel threats during election

    Voters are casting ballots in India’s general election despite threats of violence in some areas by extreme leftist insurgents, who say the country’s democracy has failed its marginalised and its poor. The central state of Chhattisgarh, which is now the epicenter of India’s four-decade Maoist insurgency, was among the areas voting Thursday in the multi-phase [...]

    18-Apr-2014 Intellasia | AP | 6:00 AM
  • India goes to polls in biggest voting day

    India goes to polls in biggest voting day

    India hosts its biggest day of voting Thursday in its marathon election, with the Nehru-Gandhi dynasty battling to save the ruling Congress party from defeat to opposition Hindu nationalist leader Narendra Modi. More than 195 million voters in 121 constituencies across a dozen states are eligible to cast ballots in the largest single day of [...]

    18-Apr-2014 Intellasia | AFP | 6:00 AM
  • Malaysia missing plane: Mini-sub completes third search mission

    Malaysia missing plane: Mini-sub completes third search mission

    Two previous missions to scour the floor of the Indian Ocean for wreckage were cut short by technical problems. The data from the sub’s latest mission is being analysed. Previous forays have not shown anything significant. It is searching in the area acoustic signals thought to be from the missing plane’s “black box” flight recorders [...]

    18-Apr-2014 Intellasia | BBC | 6:00 AM
  • 248 killed and 2643 injured in five days during Thailand’s Songkran festival

    248 killed and 2643 injured in five days during Thailand’s Songkran festival

    IT’S a paradise to die for- literally. The shocking dark side of a destination frequented by Australian travellers has been revealed. The statistics say it all: There have been 248 deaths and 2643 injuries on Thailand’s roads. And no, that’s not the yearly total so far. That’s over a period of just FIVE DAYS. The [...]

    18-Apr-2014 Intellasia | News | 6:00 AM
  • Thailand likely to hold new general election in July

    Thailand likely to hold new general election in July

    Thailand is likely to hold a new general election on July 20 or July 27, an Election Commission (EC) member said Wednesday. If so, the parliament is expected to be opened in September and a new government formed in October, Somchai Srisutthiyakorn, who is in charge of election management, said on Facebook. The EC is [...]

    18-Apr-2014 Intellasia | Xin hua | 6:00 AM
  • S. Korea, Japan hold rare ‘comfort women’ talks

    S. Korea, Japan hold rare ‘comfort women’ talks

    South Korea and Japan held rare high-level talks Wednesday on the extremely sensitive issue of wartime sex slavery, which has contributed to a virtual freeze in diplomatic ties. Kyodo News cited an unnamed government official as saying the Japanese side would indicate Tokyo is mulling an official apology and money for the so-called “comfort women” [...]

    18-Apr-2014 Intellasia | AFP | 6:00 AM
  • China jails blogger in online ‘rumour’ crackdown

    China jails blogger in online ‘rumour’ crackdown

    A Chinese court jailed a blogger for three years on Thursday, state media reported, the first person to be sentenced in a government-led crackdown on so-called Internet rumours. Qin Zhihui – among hundreds of bloggers reportedly detained in an official campaign to assert greater control over China’s popular social media – was found guilty of [...]

    18-Apr-2014 Intellasia | AFP | 6:00 AM
  • N. Korea says bird flu spreading following additional outbreak: report

    N. Korea says bird flu spreading following additional outbreak: report

    North Korea has informed the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) that bird flu is spreading in the country following an additional outbreak of the disease, a US radio report said Thursday. The North told the OIE on Wednesday that the H5N1 bird flu broke out at a chicken farm in the capital city of [...]

    18-Apr-2014 Intellasia | Yonhap | 6:00 AM

Society

China jails blogger in online ‘rumour’ crackdown

China jails blogger in online ‘rumour’ crackdown

A Chinese court jailed a blogger for three years on Thursday, state media reported, the first person to be sentenced in a government-led crackdown on so-called Internet rumours. Qin Zhihui – among hundreds of bloggers reportedly detained in an official campaign to assert greater control over China’s popular social media – was found guilty of [...]

A fetish for full body suits in Japan

By day, she is a mild-mannered office clerk, whose modest make-up and conservative hairstyle make her blend in to any crowd. By night, she dresses in a skin-tight, all-in-one Spandex body suit that covers everything – including her eyes – and sits in bars, alone but liberated, she believes, from the judgement of others. “With [...]

AC/DC rock on without guitarist Malcolm Young

Australia’s pre-eminent hard rock band AC/DC announced Thursday they will carry on making music without ailing rhythm guitarist Malcolm Young. “After 40 years of life dedicated to AC/DC, guitarist and founding member Malcolm Young is taking a break from the band due to ill health,” the group said on their website, without disclosing the nature [...]

Health

Malaysia reports first Asian death from MERS virus

A Malaysian man who went on a pilgrimage to Saudi Arabia has become the first death in Asia from Middle East respiratory syndrome, while the Philippines has isolated a health worker who tested positive for the deadly coronavirus. Malaysia’s health ministry said the Muslim man returned to Malaysia on March 29 and developed a high [...]

Mental health problems plague Indonesian election hopefuls

His body shaking violently, Sofyan screamed loudly as a traditional healer sought to calm the Indonesian election candidate, one of a growing number seeking treatment for mental health problems after polls last week. “Don’t take my votes away. I have spent so much money,” he shouted, as the healer chanted softly and poured water mixed [...]

Singapore ‘closely monitoring’ respiratory coronavirus after death in Malaysia

Hospitals in Singapore are on alert and are testing patients who show symptoms of a travelling respiratory coronavirus that has claimed the life of one man in Malaysia so far. In a statement on Wednesday, the Ministry of Health said the Malaysian who succumbed to what is called the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV) [...]

FinanceAsia

Asia: Mixed after US report, profit-taking

Asian markets were mixed yesterday Thursday April 17 as a positive report on the United States economy and the Federal Reserve chief’s pledge to keep interest rates at record lows were offset by profit-taking after the previous day’s gains. Wall Street provided another positive lead, with the technology-weighted Nasdaq leading a third-straight rally after last [...]

Dentist in Sydney Launches New Website as Educational Resource for Patients

Recently, Sydney dentist Duncan Copp, B.D.S. announced the release of a new website for his practice, The Paddington Dental Surgery. The website features a wealth of information on a variety of dental procedures, as well as details about the advanceddental technology used at the practice. Some of the procedures patients can learn more about on the site include: [...]

Asian stocks creep ahead, tech sector a drag

Asian share markets crept higher on Thursday as dovish comments from the head of the US Federal Reserve lifted Wall Street while weighing on the dollar, with trade light heading into the Easter holidays. Disappointing results from Google and IBM had also knocked their shares lower after the bell and put a crimp on technology [...]

Regional

William and Kate tour town ravaged by bushfires

Survivors of last year’s devastating Australian bushfires met with Prince William and his wife Kate on Thursday as the royal couple visited the Blue Mountains. The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, who are on a three-week tour of Australia and New Zealand with their baby son George, met some who lost everything in the fires [...]

Australian ship went far deeper into Indonesian waters than disclosed

An Australian customs ship entered far deeper into Indonesian waters than has previously been disclosed despite having digital navigational charts that displayed the correct boundaries of Indonesia’s territorial baselines, casting doubt on some of the findings of a review commissioned to investigate the incursions. The Ocean Protector entered Indonesia’s internal waters- placing it nine kilometres [...]

Sydney welcomes Will and Kate with sunshine and cheers

Britain’s Prince William and wife Kate charmed a welcoming crowd at the Sydney Opera House on Wednesday as they began the Australian leg of a tour Down Under with baby Prince George. The couple touched down in Sydney after a 10-day visit to New Zealand in which the royal infant George was the star attraction, [...]

China

IBM posts lower 1Q earnings amid hardware slump

IBM’s first-quarter earnings fell and revenue came in below Wall Street’s expectations amid an ongoing decline in its hardware business, one that was exacerbated by weaker demand in China and emerging markets. The world’s largest technology services company has been working to expand into new areas as its hardware business falters, but the latest results [...]

US official’s visit to Taiwan angers China

During her visit on Monday, Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) administrator Gina McCarthy met with Taiwan’s President Ma Ying-jeou. The visit was the first by a cabinet-level official since 2000, according to Taiwan’s presidential office. China’s foreign ministry condemned the US move, saying it was “resolutely opposed” to it, Reuters reports. Beijing considers Taiwan a rebel [...]

Thousands of workers strike at China shoe factory

Tens of thousands of workers were on strike Wednesday at a factory in southern China which makes shoes for Nike and Adidas, rights groups and a worker said. More than 30,000 employees at the Yue Yuen Industrial (Holdings) factory in Dongguan city have been striking for several days in protest at unpaid social insurance payments, [...]

Malaysia

Robot sub makes first complete search for plane

Robot sub makes first complete search for plane

A robotic submarine has completed its first full 16-hour mission scanning the floor of the Indian Ocean for wreckage of the missing Malaysian airliner after two previous missions were cut short by technical problems and deep water, authorities said on Thursday. The Bluefin 21 had covered 90 square kilometers (35 square miles) of the silt-covered [...]

Ocean floor search for missing Malaysia plane cut short again

The search for a Malaysia Airlines jetliner deep in the Indian Ocean was again cut short on Wednesday when technical problems forced a US Navy underwater drone to surface without finding anything, officials said. While a massive air and sea search for missing Malaysian Airlines flight MH370 is continuing almost 2,000 km (1,200 miles) off [...]

If filed, plane lawsuits might not get heard in US

Since Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 went missing, some lawyers have claimed they can get several millions of dollars in damages for each lost passenger by taking the cases to the United States. But past lawsuits show US federal courts are more likely to throw such cases out if the crashes happened overseas. Major disasters draw [...]

Indonesia

Singapore Resumes Military Cooperation After Indonesia’s Apology

The Singapore Armed Forces will resume cooperation with its Indonesian counterpart after its army chief apologised for the decision to name a navy ship after marines who bombed a building on the island in 1965. “The SAF will reciprocate general Moeldoko’s positive intentions by resuming bilateral cooperation” and “strengthen the mutual understanding and friendship that [...]

Indonesia Wooing Facebook to Ikea With Nation’s Young Population

Consumer-focused companies from Ikea to European automakers are putting money into Indonesia to target the country’s young population. Investment will grow at least 15 percent this year, a slower pace than last year’s 27 percent, and a more sustainable level, Mahendra Siregar, chair of the Indonesia Investment Coordinating Board (BKPM), said in Jakarta on Wednesday. [...]

Navy captain sacked for Indonesia incursion

The captain of a navy vessel which blundered into Indonesian waters while on border protection duty has been sacked from his command. A second captain will be administratively sanctioned while five others will be counselled about their responsibility to ensure their vessels stay out of Indonesian territorial waters. Six incursions, involving seven ships, occurred during [...]

Singapore

[Singapore] BOOST:Bitcoin Singapore

We invite you to our BOOST:Bitcoin Party Singapore where we continue to celebrate the rise and rise of cryptocurrencies. Having hosted successfully in Hong Kong i.e. RISE:Bitcoin, and Kuala Lumpur, now we’re heading back home- Singapore! The party will be hosted at JFDI.Asia’s Head quarters, co-sponsored and organised by CoinPip and Itbit. Antony Lewis from [...]

Indonesia apologies to Singapore

Singapore on Wednesday welcomed an apology from Indonesia’s military chief over the naming of a warship after two marines who staged a deadly bombing in the city-state in 1965. Singapore reacted furiously in February when the refurbished frigate was named “KRI Usman Harun”, lodging a diplomatic complaint with Jakarta and banning the vessel from its [...]

Singapore Resumes Military Cooperation After Indonesia’s Apology

The Singapore Armed Forces will resume cooperation with its Indonesian counterpart after its army chief apologised for the decision to name a navy ship after marines who bombed a building on the island in 1965. “The SAF will reciprocate general Moeldoko’s positive intentions by resuming bilateral cooperation” and “strengthen the mutual understanding and friendship that [...]

Thailand

Tourists behaving badly in Thailand

Chiang Mai, Thailand – The bucolic, once laid-back campus of one of Thailand’s top universities is under a security clampdown. Not against a terrorist threat, but against Chinese tourists. Thousands have clambered aboard student buses at Chiang Mai University, made a mess in cafeterias and sneaked into classes to attend lectures. Someone even pitched a [...]

Thailand Charges Journalists for Human Trafficking Report

Two journalists in Thailand are facing criminal charges for publishing a story about Thai security forces’ alleged involvement in trafficking Rohingya Muslims from Burma. The story was originally produced by the Reuters news agency, which this week won the Pulitzer Prize for international reporting for its coverage of the Rohingya issue. Thai reporter Chutima Sidasathian [...]

Thailand likely to hold new general election in July

Thailand likely to hold new general election in July

Thailand is likely to hold a new general election on July 20 or July 27, an Election Commission (EC) member said Wednesday. If so, the parliament is expected to be opened in September and a new government formed in October, Somchai Srisutthiyakorn, who is in charge of election management, said on Facebook. The EC is [...]

Philippines

Philippines quarantines man over MERS fears

Philippine health authorities said Wednesday they have quarantined a Filipino who arrived from the Middle East because he tested positive for the deadly MERS virus. The man, who arrived in the Philippines on Tuesday, is not yet showing symptoms but has been isolated in hospital, Health Secretary Enrique Ona said. The Health Department is also [...]

News Analysis: Snags seen in proposed Philippine-US military access pact

Even before the proposed military access agreement between the Philippines and the United States is signed, there are already indications that its legitimacy will be challenged both in the country’s highest court and legislature. On Sunday, the Bayan Muna (Country First) Party announced that it will question the constitutionality of the agreement in the Supreme [...]

Philippines quarantines man over MERS fears

Philippine health authorities said Wednesday they have quarantined a Filipino who arrived from the Middle East because he tested positive for the deadly MERS virus. The man, who arrived in the Philippines on Tuesday, is not yet showing symptoms but has been isolated in hospital, Health Secretary Enrique Ona said. The Health Department is also [...]

Japan

Japan makes changes for game against Philippines

The two veteran receivers who starred in Saturday’s exhibition game against Germany are out, and a couple new faces are in as the Japan national team prepares to face the Philippines on April 26 in the Asian qualifying game for the 2015 world championship, the Japan American Football Association announced on Wednesday on its official [...]

Ex-supermodel champions Paris chic for Japanese label

Paris fashion has been on the back foot recently with Tom Ford championing British eccentricity in London and Saint Laurent’s Hedi Slimane leading a style renaissance in Los Angeles. Cue ex-supermodel Ines de La Fressange with a collection restating the case for her own personal brand of classic Parisian chic. The one-time muse of Chanel [...]

BOJ keeps economic assessment for 8 out of 9 regions in Japan

The Bank of Japan on Thursday maintained its economic assessment for eight of Japan’s nine regional economies in a quarterly report, saying the economy has continued to recover or has been recovering moderately as a trend. The central bank raised its assessment on just one region. The report, issued at a meeting of its regional [...]

Korea

NKorea complains over barber’s Kim Jong Un poster

North Korea has made a diplomatic appeal to the British government to get a London salon out of its hair. The country’s diplomats have complained to the Foreign Office about a hairdressing salon that put up a poster poking fun at distinctively coiffed North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. The Foreign Office confirmed Wednesday it [...]

Schoolchild on sinking Korean ferry sends text message to father

Schoolchild on sinking Korean ferry sends text message to father

People are still alive in a capsized South Korean ferry, the father of one of the schoolchildren trapped inside the upturned ship told Reuters on Thursday as families headed out to the disaster scene. “(The child) told me in the text message, ‘I am alive, there are students alive, please save us quickly’,” the father [...]

S. Korea, Japan hold rare ‘comfort women’ talks

S. Korea, Japan hold rare ‘comfort women’ talks

South Korea and Japan held rare high-level talks Wednesday on the extremely sensitive issue of wartime sex slavery, which has contributed to a virtual freeze in diplomatic ties. Kyodo News cited an unnamed government official as saying the Japanese side would indicate Tokyo is mulling an official apology and money for the so-called “comfort women” [...]

Hong Kong

Taiwan thanks HK, Macau for post-Morakot help

Taiwan on Wednesday thanked charity groups in Hong Kong and Macau for their generosity in helping Taiwan rebuild after the devastating Typhoon Morakot hit central and southern Taiwan in 2009. Chern Jenn-chuan, CEO of the Morakot Post-Disaster Reconstruction Council under Taiwan’s Executive Yuan, extended his thanks from Hong Kong for the generous donations provided by [...]

China shadow looms large over bid to scrap Tiananmen crackdown museum in HK

A planned museum dedicated to the brutal crackdown on China’s Tiananmen Square pro-democracy protests has run into a legal challenge in Hong Kong that some say is motivated by pro-China interests ahead of the 25th anniversary of the bloodshed. The former British colony of Hong Kong returned to Chinese rule in 1997 but remains a [...]

Citic Group Seeks $36.5 Billion in HK Listing

The Citic Group, one of China’s biggest state-owned conglomerates, said on Wednesday that it had reached a formal deal for what amounts to a backdoor listing in Hong Kong valuing the company at about $36.5 billion. The cash-and-stock deal, valuing the company at 227 billion renminbi, calls for Citic to sell nearly all of its [...]

Taiwan

US official’s visit to Taiwan angers China

During her visit on Monday, Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) administrator Gina McCarthy met with Taiwan’s President Ma Ying-jeou. The visit was the first by a cabinet-level official since 2000, according to Taiwan’s presidential office. China’s foreign ministry condemned the US move, saying it was “resolutely opposed” to it, Reuters reports. Beijing considers Taiwan a rebel [...]

Taiwan court upholds ex-captain’s sentence in French frigate case

A Taiwanese court Wednesday rejected an appeal by a former navy captain who was sentenced to 15 years in prison for corruption in a controversial deal to buy French frigates two decades ago. The supreme court upheld a ruling in which Kuo Li-heng was sentenced to jail and fined Tw$200 million ($6.67 million) for accepting [...]

Ex-ROC Navy captain escapes prison time in Lafayette case

Navy captain has been sentenced to 15 years behind bars for his role taking kickbacks from the country’s purchase of six Lafayette-class frigates two decades ago, but he will not have to go back to prison because of time spent serving a separate sentence. The Supreme Court on Wednesday handed Kuo Li-heng the 15-year sentence [...]

Vietnam

Business Briefs April 18

* State Capital Investment Corporation has offloaded over 1.1 million shares of National Seed Company (NSC). * Saigon Trading Group has registered to sell over 1.3 million shares of Savimex Corporation (SAV), or a 13.5percent stake. * Hoi An Tourist Holding Company (HOT3) has announced April 25 as the ex-dividend date to pay 2013 second [...]

Programme launched to help business start-ups

The HCM City Young Businesspeople Association (YBA) and the Business Start-up Support Centre (BSSC) have launched a community project to provide business expertise to minimise risks to some 10,000 young entrepreneurs starting businesses in the next five years. “Every Businessman-A Teacher” will also provide 1,000 students with intensive training in starting a business, while 100 [...]

Vietnam caught in middle-income trap – Japan expert

Japanese expert Kenichi Ohno on April 15 reiterated his view that Vietnam has been caught in a middle-income trap though other specialists have objected to his statement recently. “I can affirm that Vietnam has fallen into the middle-income trap. I know experts have not shared my viewpoint but to me, the middle-income trap is a [...]