Jun 052020
 
Malaysian Court Sets July 28 for Verdict in Najib’s First Corruption Trial

The judge presiding over the landmark first corruption trial against ex-Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak linked to a subsidiary of the financial-scandal hit state development fund 1MDB announced on Friday that he would issue his verdict next month. Kuala Lumpur High Court Judge Nazlan Ghazali said he needed time, after hearing several days of closing …Read more

Jun 042020
 
UN Report Rips Philippine Govt over ‘Serious Human Rights Violations’

The United Nations, in a report released Thursday, criticized the Philippines for doing little to punish police linked to anti-narcotics killings, saying a heavy-handed focus on countering national security threats and illegal drugs had resulted in serious human rights violations. The U.N. Human Rights Office (OHCHR) in Geneva issued the 26-page report on the day …Read more

Jun 042020
 
EU-China summit: What really happened?

It was meant to be the geopolitical highlight of Germany’s upcoming stint in the presidency of the European Union: the first-ever summit between the Chinese president and the leaders of all 27 EU member states. Hosted by Angela Merkel herself in the German city of Leipzig this September. The goal: no less than reshaping EU-China …Read more

Jun 032020
 
Malaysia Revokes Order Awarding 5G Internet Contracts

Malaysian officials on Wednesday revoked an order awarding contracts for 5G telecommunications spectrum to five companies, including two linked to Chinese tech giant Huawei, a day after it came to light that the awards were made in mid-May through an order placed on a ministry website with no public announcement. In a press statement cancelling …Read more

Jun 032020
 
US Sends Note to UN Rebuking China’s Claims in South China Sea

The United States has submitted a diplomatic note to the United Nations rebuking China’s sweeping maritime and territorial claims in the South China Sea, which drew a rapid response from Beijing accusing Washington on Wednesday of trying to “stir up trouble.” Kelly Craft, the U.S. Representative to the U.N., sent a note on Monday to …Read more

Jun 032020
 
UK could offer millions in Hong Kong a path to citizenship

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said Wednesday that the United Kingdom will not “walk away” from the people of Hong Kong if Beijing imposes new security legislation on the former British colony. The UK is concerned that the proposed law will jeopardize institutions an independent judiciary and a free press that underpin Hong Kong’s position …Read more

Jun 032020
 
One Killed as Witness of Philippine Massacre Targeted in Roadside Ambush

Two people, including a key prosecution witness in the trial following the November 2009 massacre of 58 people in Maguindanao province, were wounded and their driver killed in a roadside ambush by gunmen in the southern Philippines on Wednesday, officials said. Mohamad Sangki, a primary witness in the killings of a 58 people – many …Read more

Jun 032020
 
Court Faults Indonesia’s President for ‘Unlawful’ Internet Blackout in Papua

Indonesia’s president and his information minister unlawfully ordered the blocking of internet services in the insurgency-stricken Papua region during deadly rioting and widespread anti-government protests last year, an Indonesian court ruled Wednesday. President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo and Johnny G. Plate, the minister of communications and information technology, were named as the targets of a lawsuit lodged …Read more

Jun 032020
 
Geopolitics, COVID-19 Behind Philippine About-Face on Defense Pact with US, Officials Say

Geopolitical tensions amid a global pandemic led Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte to keep a key military pact with the United States intact for now, Manila’s top diplomat and other government officials said Wednesday. The Philippines was looking to reinvigorate bilateral ties with its oldest ally by holding off for at least another six months from …Read more

Jun 032020
 
Is Beijing Preparing to Declare an Air Zone Over the South China Sea?

Reports of Chinese plans to declare an Air Defense Identification Zone over the disputed South China Sea have resurfaced in news media amid rising tensions in the region. But experts remain skeptical that China would take such a provocative, hard-to-enforce measure. The South China Morning Post reported this week that Beijing had planned for an …Read more

May 192019
 
Philippines gains investments, more trade after joining BRI

Xinhua, Manila: The Philippines gained “real and actual benefits” from joining the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), Philippine Trade and Industry Secretary Ramon Lopez said on Thursday, predicting the Philippines will continue to reap the benefits from China’s initiative. Lopez told Xinhua during a press conference arranged by the Philippine Presidential Communications Operations Office that …Read more

May 192019
 
Malaysia’s full-year growth forecast maintained at 4.7 pct

Xinhua, Kuala Lumpur: Malaysian economists have maintained Malaysia’s full-year growth forecast at 4.7 percent as they foresee the government’s recent stimulus measures will support the country’s economy. Maybank Investment Bank Research said on Friday that measures to stimulate the domestic economy have been rolled out with the central bank lowering the country’s interest rate and …Read more

May 192019
 
Mineral misery: Vietnam salt farmers battered by imports, climate

AFP, HON KHOI: The salt farmers of Hon Khoi rise before dawn as they have for generations, fanning out across shallow seawater pools in southern Vietnam to harvest the precious mineral, hoping for a better season than the last. The work is punishing and the incomes unstable, subject to seesawing demand swayed by foreign imports, …Read more