World News

Police: Officer, suspect shot to death in Indonesian village believed to be terrorist hideout

PALU, Indonesia—A police officer and a suspected Islamic militant were killed in gunfire Thursday near a mountainous village believed to be a terrorist hideout in eastern Indonesia, local police said. Brig. Gen. Ari Dono Sukmanto, chief of Central Sulawesi police, said another militant suspect was arrested after the unidentified gunmen fired at members of the …

US concerned China is gradually asserting control in disputed Asian waters

WASHINGTON—The U.S. voiced concern Wednesday that China is gradually asserting control in the disputed South China Sea on the basis of vague territorial claims unsupported by international law. Sharpening U.S. criticism of the rising Asian power, Daniel Russel, the top U.S. diplomat for East Asia, described in congressional testimony a litany of actions by China …

New Turkish Internet restrictions increase concerns over media freedom

ANKARA, Turkey—New Internet restrictions approved by parliament are raising concerns the government is trying to control the flow of information amid a corruption scandal, and a senior European official on Thursday called the measures “a step back” for media freedom. Under the legislation approved Wednesday, the country’s telecommunications authority would be allowed to block websites …

UN report says UAE judiciary under ‘de facto’ control of rulers, calls for torture probe

ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates—A United Nations human rights expert said Wednesday that the United Arab Emirates’ judiciary is under the “de facto control” of the country’s executive branch, adding that the government should allow independent investigations into claims of torture if it does not want its image to suffer. The initial findings by the …

US intel chief: Sense of destiny drives China’s aggressive pursuit of territorial claims

WASHINGTON—The chief of U.S. intelligence said Tuesday China’s aggressive pursuit of territorial claims in the seas of East Asia is driven by a sense of historical destiny and is causing great concern among countries in the region. Director of Director of National Intelligence James Clapper said China has pursued a very impressive military modernization that …

86 Cambodian factory workers hurt in truck accident

PHNOM PENH, Cambodia—At least 86 workers have been injured in a truck crash on their way to work at factories making garments and sports shoes for famous western brands. The truck carrying 93 workers rolled over after a front tire burst Tuesday morning. Transporting workers in open trucks is common in Southeast Asia. Svay Rieng provincial …

Philippines, New Zealand to launch working holiday scheme

Another significant milestone in Philippines-New Zealand bilateral relations has been reached with the launch of the Working Holiday Scheme (WHS).   Effective 05 February 2014, Filipinos and New Zealanders, ages 18 to 30 years, will be able to apply for the WHS visa allowing them the opportunity to stay for one year in New Zealand …

Hague says Britain eyeing bigger role in Asian economy, security, but not territorial disputes

MANILA, Philippines—Britain is looking at increasing its involvement in Asia’s economy and security but will not take sides in territorial disputes in the South China Sea involving China and its smaller neighbours, British Foreign Secretary William Hague said Thursday. Hague said during a visit to the Philippine capital that trade and security are closely related and thrive in …

AP appoints Baker as Southeast Asia photo editor, part of regional reorganization

JAKARTA, Indonesia—Mark Baker, Malaysia and Singapore chief of bureau for The Associated Press, has been appointed to the new role of Southeast Asia photo editor, based in Jakarta, Indonesia. Baker will be responsible for photo operations in Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore and the Philippines. The announcement was made Friday by Greg Baker, the AP’s Asia photo editor. The move …

Hong Kong tightens rules on visits by Philippine officials, demanding hostage tragedy apology

HONG KONG—Hong Kong will end visa-free visits by Philippine officials because their government has not apologized for the deaths of eight Hong Kong tourists nearly four years ago, the southern Chinese city’s leader said Wednesday. Leung Chun-ying said holders of official Philippine government passports will no longer be allowed to visit for up to 14 days without visas starting …

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