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China hosted the foreign ministers of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations at a meeting in Chongqing on June 7-8 to mark the 30th anniversary of dialogue relations between the two sides. Given the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on the region, China offered Asean its support by way of supplying and joint production of vaccines.Further, the jo…
 
Arrest warrants could be issued within months if the International Criminal Court’s investigation into the Philippine government’s “war on drugs” proceeds, a human rights lawyer has said.The prosecutor’s office of the ICC in The Hague announced on Monday it was requesting an investigation into the government of Rodrigo Duterte on suspicion of crime…
 
The US death toll from Covid-19 surpassed 600,000 on Tuesday, although authorities hailed progress towards a return to normality as its vaccination programme promised to turn the page on one of the worst health crises in its history.The United States has racked up by far the largest national death toll – ahead of Brazil and India – after a heavily-…
 
Thousands of Israeli far-right nationalists marched in a flag-waving procession through East Jerusalem on Tuesday, an event that risked reigniting tensions with Palestinians and posed an early challenge to Israel’s new government.Last month, Israeli-Palestinian confrontations in contested Jerusalem helped trigger 11 days of cross-border fighting be…
 
The European Union and United States launched a trade and technology council that seeks to “write the rules of the road” on the global economy, in the face of growing competition from China. It was the latest salvo against Beijing on US President Joe Biden’s whistle-stop European tour, which had seen him succeed in rallying support among the G7, Na…
 
Arrest warrants could be issued within months if the International Criminal Court’s investigation into the Philippine government’s “war on drugs” proceeds, a human rights lawyer has said.The prosecutor’s office of the ICC in The Hague announced on Monday it was requesting an investigation into the government of Rodrigo Duterte on suspicion of crime…
 
The Urban Renewal Authority will spend HK$100 billion (US$13 billion) over the next five years building 18,000 homes for Hong Kong’s private sector under a massive drive to help first-time buyers and regenerate parts of the city.Announcing its biggest and costliest five-year business plan since it was established in 2001, the authority also reveale…
 
Radiation levels around a nuclear power plant in southern China are normal and the facility is running safely, Chinese authorities said on Tuesday.“The Taishan nuclear power station has a good operating record … There is no abnormality in the radiation levels around the nuclear power plant and the safety is guaranteed,” foreign ministry spokesman Z…
 
The Chinese navy is sailing its new destroyers in the South China Sea as its shipbuilding spree continues, state media reported.The Nanning, a new type of 052D guided missile destroyer made its public debut in a four-day real combat training exercise in the South China Sea after it entered service with the People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN), the …
 
China will work with the Islamic Development Bank to help member states build public health laboratories in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic.Chen Weiqing, China’s ambassador to Saudi Arabia, signed an agreement with Mansur Muhtar, vice-president of the IsDB, in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, on Monday. Basic information on the deal was released in…
 
India has endured the world’s worst Covid-19 outbreak, a tragedy exacerbated by the trauma of seeing family and friends suffer as so many other countries emerge from the pandemic. Now Indian tech companies, which support Wall Street banks and Silicon Valley giants, are trying to figure out how to address the mental health fallout for a generation o…
 
India has endured the world’s worst Covid-19 outbreak, a tragedy exacerbated by the trauma of seeing family and friends suffer as so many other countries emerge from the pandemic. Now Indian tech companies, which support Wall Street banks and Silicon Valley giants, are trying to figure out how to address the mental health fallout for a generation o…
 
Hong Kong’s consumer watchdog has warned of the traps of staycation bookings after receiving complaints over a sea view suite with no view, and from a guest who took a cat to a pet-friendly hotel but was told only dogs were allowed.The Consumer Council said on Tuesday it had received 10 complaints relating to staycation bookings in the first five m…
 
China’s box office revenue over the most recent three-day holiday period plummeted to its lowest level in seven years amid a new coronavirus outbreak in the populous province of Guangdong, raising questions about the recovery of the nation’s film industry. Box office sales for the Dragon Boat Festival holiday that ended on Monday grossed 465 millio…
 
A famous tourist attraction in eastern China apologised on Monday for its poor crowd management after thousands of people were trapped for hours waiting for the cable car service to take them back down a mountain.The tourists crowded inside the information centre at Zhongtianmen, a scenic area of the Mount Tai cultural and historical park in Shando…
 
Social distancing measures and some lockdowns will remain in place in Chinese megacity Guangzhou, with a health official saying even though it reported just one new Covid-19 case on Tuesday the pandemic fight was at a “critical stage”.The city in southern China – home to nearly 19 million people and a major transport hub – has recorded 147 infectio…
 
In a room warmed by an open wood stove, Baima says her family converted their white brick house into a hotel as China’s Communist Party leadership ushers tens of millions of tourists to the politically sensitive region of Tibet.In her remote village of Tashigang, surrounded by mist covered mountains nearly 500km (300 miles) from the capital Lhasa a…
 
A Polytechnic University graduate has become the first person found guilty of rioting during the violent clashes around the campus at the height of Hong Kong’s social unrest in 2019, while a clerk admitted his role in a lunchtime protest. Product engineer Lui Sheuk-hang, 31, was convicted on Tuesday on one count of rioting and another of possession…
 
Malaysia expects to fully reopen its economy and lift a ban on inter-state travel beginning end-October at the earliest if new coronavirus cases average below 500 a day, said Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin on Tuesday.The current phase of the national lockdown is costing the economy 1 billion ringgit (US$242 million) a day as most businesses remain…
 
Malaysia expects to fully reopen its economy and lift a ban on interstate travel beginning end-October at the earliest if new coronavirus cases average below 500 a day, said Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin on Tuesday.The current phase of the national lockdown is costing the economy 1 billion ringgit (US$242 million) a day as most businesses remain …
 
Taiwan’s home-grown Covid-19 vaccines could be restricted to use on the island if the US Food and Drug Administration follows through on a plan to stop reviewing and processing new emergency use authorisation (EUA) requests.Worse still, the local vaccines may face stiff competition from international rivals once more Covid-19 vaccines reach interna…
 
China has accused the United States of trying to sow discord in its relations with Europe and called on European nations not to tie themselves to the US strategy.China also vowed to take action against Nato, which labelled Beijing a challenge to the security alliance.Analysts said China was trying to emphasise the differences in interests between E…
 
China’s air force sent 28 warplanes into Taiwan’s air defence identification zone on Tuesday, a day after a US aircraft carrier group held drills in the disputed South China Sea.Observers said the show of force by the People’s Liberation Army, its largest yet, aimed to send a warning to the United States over the exercises, which were conducted ahe…
 
The G7 nations failed to go far enough at their weekend summit to halt the use of coal, but a pledge to phase out international funding for new coal power this year could help shift Asia’s policy on the dirty fuel, analysts said.At a meeting in Britain, leaders of the powerful group of nations said they supported “a green revolution” and committed …
 
One year has passed since a deadly brawl between Chinese and Indian troops in the Galwan Valley in the China-Indian border areas, which resulted in the death of 20 Indian soldiers and four Chinese troops. The aftermath is still being felt today. Beijing was given the cold shoulder when it offered to help pandemic-devastated India. Such resentment s…
 
The International Criminal Court’s chief prosecutor sought a full investigation on Monday into crimes against humanity during the Philippines’ war on drugs, in one of her last acts before stepping down this week.Fatou Bensouda is asking judges at the world’s only permanent war crimes court to authorise a probe into allegations that police unlawfull…
 
The Philippines has for the third time suspended a decision to scrap a two-decade-old Visiting Forces Agreement with the United States, its foreign minister said on Monday, amid a territorial dispute with China in the South China Sea.Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin said the suspension would be for a further six months while President Rodri…
 
Singapore authorities have detected 19 new locally-transmitted coronavirus cases, the highest since June 3, due to an increase in testing amid a phased loosening of restrictions this week.Two cases were untraceable while 17 cases were linked to earlier infections, government data showed on Monday. Of the new infections detected, one was discovered …
 
Tokyo Olympics organisers plan to give away about 150,000 condoms at next month’s Games, but have told athletes to take them home rather than use them in the Olympic Village, where social distancing rules and coronavirus measures are the top priority.Large numbers of condoms have been given out at the Games since the 1988 Seoul Olympics to raise aw…
 
Last week Thaisho, a small bar in Bangkok, got rid of its tables, chairs, glasses and cutlery, and closed its doors for good.Thailand’s third wave of Covid-19 has dragged into a third month, with no signs of slowing down, and the bar and restaurant sector has taken yet another hit because of social distancing measures. Thaisho, which has been opera…
 
The trial of deposed Myanmar leader Aung San Suu Kyi got under way on Monday, more than four months after a military coup, with junta witnesses testifying the Nobel laureate flouted coronavirus restrictions and illegally imported walkie-talkies.Near daily protests have rocked Myanmar since the generals’ February 1 putsch.A mass uprising has been me…
 
Philippine troops killed four Abu Sayyaf militants in a gun battle on Sunday in the country’s south, including a commander blamed for beheadings and a suspected would-be suicide bomber, military officials said.Army troops backed by police were to serve a warrant for the arrest of Injam Yadah at his home after midnight in Alat village in Jolo town i…
 
Anti-junta protesters flooded Myanmar’s social media with pictures of themselves wearing black on Sunday, in a show of solidarity for the Rohingya, a minority group that is among the most persecuted in the country.Since the military ousted civilian leader Aung San Suu Kyi from power in a February 1 coup, an anti-junta movement demanding a return to…
 
Indonesia on Sunday reported 9,868 Covid-19 daily infections, the highest figure since February 22, the Covid-19 task force said.Total infections are 1,911,358, while 149 Covid-19 fatalities were recorded, taking the total to 52,879.The sprawling archipelago of 270 million people is bracing for a peak in coronavirus infections after the Eid al-Fitr…
 
As a guest professor at the Institute of Food and Nutrition Development in Beijing, Suresh Babu often finds himself eating out at Chinese restaurants after his lectures. Fortunately for him, Babu is a “rice lover”.“Whenever I go to China, I find hybrid rice in the restaurants, grocery shops, everywhere,” said Babu, who is also a senior fellow at th…
 
At a time Covid-19 vaccine hesitancy has emerged as a major stumbling block for India’s government, businesses hoping to give the country a boost are unveiling eclectic freebies ranging from free alcohol and food to gold nose pins and hand blenders.Facebook’s Covid-19 Symptom Survey puts the rate of India’s vaccine hesitancy – defined by the World …
 
When Ireland-based Philippine migrant Ramon Borje and his daughter were on holiday in Italy in 2018, they broke away from their tour group in Rome to make a side trip to Milan, three hours away.The draw? A meal at Jollibee, a giant Philippine fast food chain known for its burgers, fried chicken and spaghetti. So beloved is the brand, time and dista…
 
India’s quest for Olympic glory has run into a hurdle, even before it can start.Days after Olympic kits for its athletes were unveiled by sports minister Kiren Rijiju at a special ceremony, the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) cut ties with the main sponsor of the team, the Chinese sports brand Li-Ning.The decision has now become a diplomatic irrit…
 
India logged 84,332 fresh coronavirus cases in the past 24 hours, the lowest number of infections in 70 days, government data showed on Saturday.The South Asian country however reported a high number of virus-related deaths, with 4,002 fatalities in the same period, according to a Health Ministry bulletin.The rise in deaths has been attributed to a…
 
It took 25-year-old Wardini and her two young children almost two months to travel with smugglers by road from Jordan, through Iran, to western Afghanistan. By the time they were arrested by Afghan border guards, she had burned their Indonesian passports. They were not going home, she told an Indonesian consular officer who visited her in a Kabul p…
 
With China’s recent announcement of a three-child policy to increase its fertility rate, some Chinese analysts and social commentators have cited the relative success of Nordic countries in raising birth rates. But while efforts by Scandinavian states in boosting fertility have occasionally been successful, the number of births in these countries h…
 
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