Category: Asia / Pacific

Asia / Pacific

India to roll out Covid-19 app for low cost Reliance JioPhone in bid to widen tracing

Issued on: 07/05/2020 – 15:30Modified: 07/05/2020 – 15:30 India will within days roll out a version of its coronavirus contact-tracing application that can run on mobile carrier Reliance Jio’s cheap phones, as it looks to increase the reach of the system, a senior government official said on Thursday. India, which has imposed the world’s biggest […]

Asia / Pacific

Robots and cameras: China’s sci-fi quarantine enforcement

Issued on: 03/05/2020 – 09:56Modified: 03/05/2020 – 09:56 Robots delivering meals, ghostly figures in hazmat suits and cameras pointed at front doors: China’s methods to enforce coronavirus quarantines have looked like a sci-fi dystopia for legions of people. Authorities have taken drastic steps to ensure that people do not break isolation rules after China largely […]

Asia / Pacific

South Korea says Kim Jong Un is not believed to have had surgery

Issued on: 03/05/2020 – 10:02Modified: 03/05/2020 – 10:02 South Korea’s assessment is that North Korean leader Kim Jong Un did not have surgery, local news outlet Yonhap said, citing an unidentified senior official at presidential Blue House.  “There were speculative reports that Chairman Kim underwent a surgery citing some difference to his walk,” the official was cited as saying.”We have […]

Asia / Pacific

US tweets support for Taiwan, enraging China

Issued on: 02/05/2020 – 09:59Modified: 02/05/2020 – 09:59 The United States tweeted its support for Taiwan’s participation in the United Nations Friday, provoking a sharp response from China expressing “strong indignation and firm opposition.” The tweet from the U.S. Mission to the United Nations said the 193-member global organization was founded to serve “all voices,” […]

Asia / Pacific

N. Korea’s official news agency KCNA claims premier Kim Jong-un has made a public appearance

Issued on: 02/05/2020 – 00:40 North Korea’s state news agency KCNA said on Saturday leader Kim Jong Un attended the completion of a fertilizer plant in a region north of the capital, Pyongyang, in the first report of his public activity since April 11. Reuters could not independently verify the KCNA report.KCNA reported that Kim cut a ribbon at […]

Asia / Pacific

North Korea’s Kim Jong-un is ‘alive and well’, says Seoul

Issued on: 27/04/2020 – 03:55 North Korean leader Kim Jong-un is “alive and well”, a top security adviser to the South’s President Moon Jae-in said, downplaying rumours over Kim’s health following his absence from a key anniversary. “Our government position is firm,” said Moon’s special adviser on national security Moon Chung-in, in an interview with […]

Asia / Pacific

Work and leisure return to Wuhan as Covid-19 fears and economic fallout linger

Issued on: 21/04/2020 – 16:38Modified: 21/04/2020 – 16:38 After 76 days under lockdown, China’s Wuhan city is gradually returning to a new normal. But while Covid-19 infection rates have fallen, social distancing measures are still in place and the economic repercussions for the industrial hub are also becoming clear. A bride in a long gown poses by […]

Asia / Pacific

South Korea plays down report North Korea’s Kim Jong Un in ‘grave danger’ after surgery

Issued on: 21/04/2020 – 05:47Modified: 21/04/2020 – 05:47 South Korea played down a report Tuesday that the North’s leader Kim Jong Un was being treated after surgery, as speculation mounted over his absence from a key anniversary. Pyongyang marked the birthday of its late founder, Kim’s grandfather Kim Il Sung, on April 15 — by far the most important date in its […]

Asia / Pacific

US, UK slam arrests of prominent Hong Kong democracy activists

Issued on: 19/04/2020 – 06:52Modified: 19/04/2020 – 06:52 Foreign governments criticised the arrest of 15 Hong Kong democracy activists in a police sweep on charges of organising and participating in anti-government protests last year. The arrests on Saturday were the biggest crackdown on the city’s pro-democracy movement since the outbreak of mass protests last year.The International Bar […]

Asia / Pacific

Hong Kong activists arrested over last year’s democracy rallies

Issued on: 18/04/2020 – 19:57 Police in Hong Kong carried out a sweeping operation against high-profile democracy campaigners on Saturday, arresting 15 activists on charges related to massive protests that rocked the Asian financial hub last year. Among those targeted was 72-year-old media tycoon Jimmy Lai, founder of anti-establishment newspaper Apple Daily, who was arrested […]

Asia / Pacific

China’s GDP contracts for the first time in its entire recorded history

Issued on: 17/04/2020 – 05:19Modified: 17/04/2020 – 05:19 China’s economy shrank for the first time since at least 1992 in the first quarter, as the coronavirus outbreak paralysed production and spending, raising pressure on authorities to do more to stop mounting job losses. Gross domestic product (GDP) fell 6.8% in January-March year-on-year, official data showed […]

Asia / Pacific

Emerging from virus lockdown, Wuhan’s ‘wet markets’ face uncertain future

Issued on: 16/04/2020 – 11:03Modified: 16/04/2020 – 11:05 At a large food market in the Chinese city of Wuhan, signs forbid the selling of wild animals and live fowl, while announcements calling for “victory” over COVID-19 play on a loop from speakers. China’s “wet markets” have been slammed internationally as the coronavirus roils the world, […]

Asia / Pacific

North Korean defector wins in Gangnam, South Korea’s ritziest seat

Issued on: 16/04/2020 – 10:30Modified: 16/04/2020 – 10:30 A former North Korean diplomat has won a parliamentary seat in South Korea’s swankiest district Gangnam, four years after fleeing a London embassy and becoming Pyongyang’s highest-ranking official to defect to the South. Thae Yong Ho was Pyongyang’s deputy ambassador to the United Kingdom where he had managed secret funds […]

Asia / Pacific

S. Korean ruling party wins landslide in parliamentary elections on strength of Covid-19 success

Issued on: 16/04/2020 – 01:38Modified: 16/04/2020 – 01:38 South Korea’s left-leaning ruling party won a landslide victory in Wednesday’s general election, partial results showed, after the coronavirus pandemic turned the political tide in President Moon Jae-in’s favour.  The country uses a mix of first-past-the-post seats and proportional representation, but even before all the individual constituencies […]

Asia / Pacific

China denies criticising France’s response to Covid-19 crisis

Issued on: 15/04/2020 – 15:10Modified: 15/04/2020 – 15:10 China on Tuesday denied criticising France’s response to the coronavirus pandemic, saying there had been “misunderstandings” after French officials summoned the Chinese ambassador in Paris. “China has never issued negative comments on the way France has handled the epidemic,” foreign ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian said at a […]

Asia / Pacific

African diaspora questions China relationship after spike in discrimination over Covid-19

Issued on: 14/04/2020 – 14:50Modified: 14/04/2020 – 14:51 A spike in racial discrimination in China prompted by fears over the Covid-19 pandemic has led some in the African diapora to reevaluate the relationship between the African continent and Beijing. Over the past week, footage has been published on social media showing Africans in the southern Chinese […]

Asia / Pacific

North Korea test-fires multiple missiles from ground and air

Issued on: 14/04/2020 – 11:56Modified: 14/04/2020 – 11:56 North Korea launched multiple short-range anti-ship cruise missiles into the sea and Sukhoi jets fired air-to-surface missiles on Tuesday as part of its ongoing military exercises, South Korea’s military said. The missile tests came on the eve of a national holiday in North Korea to celebrate the birthday of Kim Il-Sung, the […]

Asia / Pacific

China approves two experimental Covid-19 vaccines for clinical trials

Issued on: 14/04/2020 – 04:43 China has approved early-stage human tests for two experimental vaccines to combat the new coronavirus that killed over 100,000 people worldwide, state media Xinhua reported on Tuesday. The vaccines are being developed by a Beijing-based unit of Nasdaq-listed Sinovac Biotech, and by the Wuhan Institute of Biological Products, an affiliate […]

Asia / Pacific

African ambassadors write letter of complaint to China over ‘discrimination’

Issued on: 13/04/2020 – 04:30 African ambassadors in China have written to the country’s foreign minister over what they call discrimination against Africans as the country seeks to prevent a resurgence of the coronavirus. Several African countries have separately also demanded that China address their concerns that Africans, in particular in the southern city of Guangzhou, are being mistreated […]

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